Ukraine will receive the seized Antonov An-124 that Canada is sending from Volga-Dnepr.

In a new round of penalties, the Canadian government will seize and deliver a Ruslan-designated Antonov An-124 to Ukraine. The decision was determined during a meeting with Justin Trudeau and Christie Freeland, the deputy prime minister of Canada, according to a statement from Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal. Since April 11, 2023, Shmyhal has been visiting North America, including the US and Canada, and has met with Canadian Ministers on that same day.


The confiscation is a component of new measures that the Canadian government announced on April 5, 2023. The sanctions also apply to the Volga-Dnepr Group, which includes the two companies Volga-Dnepr Airlines, AirBridgeCargo Airlines, and ATRAN, a different Russian cargo carrier. According to information from, a Volga-Dnepr Group Antonov An-124 with the registration RA-82078 is now stranded at Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ), where it has remained since February 27, 2022, when it landed on a trip from Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (ANC), Alaska, US.

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On February 24, 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, leading to severe international sanctions being placed on the nation's aviation industry. These restrictions have made it impossible for Russian-registered and related aircraft to fly across the airspace of several other nations, including the US, Canada, and Europe. 

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Four of the 10 Antonov An-124s operated by Volga-Dnepr Group's subsidiary Volga-Dnepr Airlines are currently grounded at foreign airports. Three Ruslans, other than the one that is now at YYZ, are stranded at Leipzig/Halle Airport (LEJ), in Germany. Prior to this, a US judge dismissed AirBridgeCargo's request for reimbursement from aircraft lessor BOC Aviation for lease defaults on three Boeing 747-8F aircraft. BOC Aviation won the case, and US District Court Judge Lewis J. Liman from the Southern District of New York gave the lessor a $406.2 million judgment. One 747-8F was recovered by BOC Aviation, but two are still parked at Moscow Sheremetyevo International Airport (SVO) in Russia.

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