A new satellite view of the 40-mile-long (64 kilometers) Russian invasion convoy headed for the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv shows just how huge the assemblage of tanks and artillery haulers really is.
The following satellite image was taken by U.S firm Maxar Technologies on Monday and appears to show a convoy of Russian armored tanks and trucks that stretches from Pybirsk, further north of Kyiv, to the Antonov airport (also known as the Hostomel airport — the site of fighting last week between Russian and Ukrainian forces) on the northwest outskirts of the Ukrainian capital.
Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-3 satellite captured high-resolution imagery of the sprawling convoy on Feb. 28, four days after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began. The Virginia-based company has now stitched those photos together to create a 3D video, which provides a better sense of the convoy’s massive scope.
Based on additional imagery collected, the Russian military convoy stretches from near Antonov airport in the south to the northern end of the convoy near Prybirsk.
The Russian convoy has not been able to reach Kyiv, stalling about 19 miles (30 km) outside the capital in the face of fierce Ukrainian resistance, according to media reports and government intelligence assessments.
It should be noted that the situation in Ukraine is fast moving and may now may be different to what is seen in these images, which show the convoy on Sunday and Monday.
“We still assess that the convoy that everybody’s been focused on is stalled. We have no reason to doubt Ukrainian claims … that they have contributed to it being stalled by attacking it,” a senior US official told reporters, CNN reported on Thursday (March 3).
Official sources have not confirmed the existence of the convoy, but there are growing and widespread fears it suggests that Russia is preparing to launch a full-scale assault on Kyiv, a city it has not yet occupied although there have been skirmishes on the outskirts.
Cloudy conditions have prevented WorldView-3 and other optical-light satellites from getting a fresh look at the convoy for days now. When the clouds part, however, we should get an update thanks to these eyes in the sky.
Russia began its invasion of Ukraine last Thursday and its forces have attacked various cities and areas in the north, east and south of the country. However, analysts have suggested that Russia has made slower progress in its advance into the country and has met more resistance than it expected.