A massive convoy of Russian ground forces is wending its way closer to Kyiv, drawing within 20 miles of the center of the Ukrainian capital on Monday, a new batch of satellite images showed.
The line of Russian military vehicles stretched along the road for roughly 40 miles, far longer than initial estimates, reported the U.S. firm Maxar Technologies, which captured the photos Monday morning local time. The convoy includes armored vehicles, tanks and towed artillery, Maxar said, and it appears to be making steady progress along the war-scarred roads leading to Kyiv.
On Sunday, Maxar released images that showed the same group of Russian forces roughly 40 miles from the capital. The company’s analysts estimated then that the convoy was about three miles long, but revised their assessment dramatically upward one day later, noting that cloud cover interfered with initial projections.
The convoy cuts a menacing figure through the countryside near Kyiv, but Ukrainian troops remained defiant on Monday after weathering the most intense shelling since the invasion began, in the eastern city of Kharkiv.
At some points in the convoy, vehicles appear to be spaced many yards apart; elsewhere, they’re traveling two or three abreast. In some images, burning buildings can be seen near the road outside of Ivankiv, a settlement northwest of Kyiv.
Additional images, taken from the sky above southern Belarus, show more ground force deployments and attack helicopter units, Maxar reported. All were spotted less than 20 miles from Belarus’s border with Ukraine.