The airport, which was captured by the Russians almost immediately upon the invasion of Ukraine in February, is now seriously damaged following months of Ukrainian strikes on the site during Russian occupation.
When Russian forces abandoned Kherson city last month, they also left behind Chornovaivka Airport, located just six miles to the north of the river.
The images shared by the Ukrainian Defense Minister showed a man hanging from a blade of an abandoned Russian helicopter emblazoned with the recognizable “Z” symbol on its side.
Reznikov himself also appeared in one photograph wearing a protective helmet and standing in front of a derelict building and a half-destroyed airport sign.
“These are the remains of the Kherson (ХЕРСОН) International Airport. Russians will understand the first 3 letters of the city name without a translator… this is the only thing they can get from [Ukraine] Many of them, now fertilizing our fields, have already learned this. Best of luck!” Reznikov wrote.
Video footage of the destroyed airport was also shared on social media, revealing just how intense Ukrainian strikes on the facility during Russian occupation were.
Starting with a shot of the roads leading up to the airport, the video later shows the entrance to the building completely destroyed, runways with craters in the ground, and structures on the verge of collapse.
Significant parts of the building are already completely destroyed, too, with entire walls and windows were blown out.
Kherson Airport A “Death Trap”
Writing for Forbes, David Axe wrote in mid-November that the airport was a “death trap” for Russian troops during the occupation.
“No one should be surprised at what the Ukrainians discovered at Chornobaivka Airport, on the northern edge of Kherson city six miles north of the river,” Axe wrote, adding that the airport became a “veritable shooting gallery for Ukrainian artillery” for several months.
The bodies of Russians who died as a result of Ukrainian shelling on the site also reportedly littered the airport as Ukrainians entered the building following the withdrawal of Russian troops.
While the airport was ideal for storing weaponry and aircraft for the Russian side, the fact that Chornobaivka lies only 23 miles from Mykolaiv meant that it was in the easy firing range of Ukrainian artillerymen. The airport was also regularly targeted by Ukraine’s TB2 drones.
Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor.