January 16, Ukraine celebrates the Day of Remembrance of the so-called Cyborgs – the day of honoring the memory of Ukrainian soldiers who defended the Donetsk airport from May 26, 2014 to January 22, 2015 during the war in eastern Ukraine.
Pictures of the airport have been posted on social networks, where it is possible to see what the country’s most modern airport, reconstructed for holding the matches of the European Football Championship in 2012 in Donetsk, looks like now.
They appeared on the Facebook page “Zlobny Ukr Donetsk” with the caption: “Silence and the wind blows, but sometimes a machine gun rumbles lonely, grenade launchers can be sounded and a cornflower swish and again silence in this dead place, where dead souls howl among themselves all here.”
It will be recalled that for eight months the defense of Donetsk airport was held not only by soldiers of the regular Ukrainian army, but also by volunteer units, in particular the Right Sector. They were actively helped by doctors and volunteers. Therefore, this memorable day is dedicated to all those who stood for the territorial integrity of Ukraine in those days.
Donetsk airport was closed on May 26, 2014, after Russian militants fired on it, when staff and passengers were still on its premises. Several planes remain near the terminals.
Fighting continued unabated throughout the summer until the end of 2014, and despite attempts to establish a ceasefire, still continued in January 2015. The airport was completely destroyed on January 22, 2015 as a result of attack by Russian troops and separatists.
On January 13, 2015, the traffic control station of the Donetsk airport collapsed, which became a symbol of the heroism of the defenders of Ukraine. During all 8 months of defense, the building of the control station was subjected to daily shelling.
On January 21, 2015, Ukrainian forces lost control of the airport as they used a truce to evacuate their dead and wounded, and terrorists mined and blew up the part of the airport terminal building where Ukrainian defenders were stationed.
The total number of troops involved in operations at the airport has not yet been reliably established. The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine cites the number of 100 soldiers as dead during the defense of the airport. Four of them are listed as missing. In addition to the dead, there are data on 290-305 wounded during the fighting.
Translated by Yevhiia Ivanova