Pics show Russian tanks in ‘TRAFFIC JAM’ as stalled invasion could leave Putin’s troops to die in -20C ‘iron freezers’

 RUSSIA'S stranded troops are facing freezing to death in their tanks as Putin's military becomes bogged down in the mud and an unwinnable war in Ukraine, sources claim.

A 40-mile long convoy of tanks and armoured vehicles remains trapped outside Kyiv, more than a week after launching their assault on the Ukrainian capital.

The 40km convoy is around 30km from Kyiv city centre
The 40km convoy is around 30km from Kyiv city centreCredit: Newsflash
A destroyed bridge in Irpin is further slowing down Russia's progress
A destroyed bridge in Irpin is further slowing down Russia's progressCredit: Reuters
Thousands are trying to escape Irpin along an improvised path
Thousands are trying to escape Irpin along an improvised pathCredit: AP

As a sudden cold snap sends temperatures in Eastern Europe plunging to -10C overnight - or -20C including windchill - Russian troops are trapped in what one ex-soldier called "40-ton iron freezers".

Icy conditions are also set to make life even harder for Putin's invaders, who have been stuck around 20 miles from Kyiv for days amid mechanical problems, fuel supply issues, and solid Ukrainian resistance.

Aerial satellite images taken on Wednesday morning show the traffic jam of Russian military vehicle close to Antonov Airport, just a few miles northwest of the outskirts of Kyiv.

Just south of Antonov, in the besieged city of Irpin, a badly-damaged bridge can be seen, further slowing down the Russian advance.

Traffic can be seen queuing around the bridge, suggesting Russia's military may be continuing to press on towards Kyiv after two weeks of slow progress.

The large military convoy was first photographed on February 28, according to satellite images released on Tuesday by Maxar Technologies.

Yesterday, a senior US defence official said the convoy hadn't advanced beyond Hostomel, near Antonov Airport.

Russian forces are reportedly trying to reach Kyiv through other directions, the official noted.Former British Army Major Kevin Price told the Mail Online that Russia's tanks will become nothing more than "40-ton freezers" as temperatures plummet, and said that the bitter conditions will further dampen the morale of the Russian military.

Glen Grant, a senior defence expert at the Baltic Security Foundation, said unless the Russian convoy is refuelled and able to get moving again, many soldiers will have to surrender or face freezing to death.

"You just can't sit around and wait because if you are in the vehicle you are waiting to be killed," he told Newsweek

"They are not stupid."

Already, reports are coming in of demoralised Russian troops complaining about the war in intercepted phone calls to comrades and loved ones.

In the calls, Putin's troops claim the war could drag on for "months" and say they are being "massacred" in Ukraine.

It comes as...

Russian soldiers are reportedly "deserting their posts" after "large-scale losses", including the deaths of top generals.

However, the cold spell is also worsening the lives of Ukrainian refugees, as well as children trapped in the war.

Yesterday, a girl, eight, died of dehydration in the city of Mariupol after Russian attacks left her without access to water, power, or heating.

🔵 Read our Russia - Ukraine live blog for the very latest updates

Maxar Technologies has been tracking Russian military movements around Ukraine through satellite images since late last year.

A portion of the convoy has been photographed in more or less the same location as it was on February 28, four days after the invasion began.

Additional pictures released on Tuesday show bomb craters and a damaged bridge in Irpin.

The bridge was destroyed in a Russian airstrike, and desperate Ukrainians have been crossing the Irpin River on an improvised path underneath to escape the shelling.

A Russian military convoy is still stuck outside Kyiv
A Russian military convoy is still stuck outside KyivCredit: Reuters
Thousands of refugees try desperately to escape Irpin
Thousands of refugees try desperately to escape IrpinCredit: Getty
More than 2m refugees have fled Ukraine since the start of the invasion
More than 2m refugees have fled Ukraine since the start of the invasionCredit: LNP
More than half of those have travelled to Poland
More than half of those have travelled to PolandCredit: LNP

Yesterday, Ukrainian officials said a safe evacuation corridor had opened from Irpin, but it isn't clear how long it was open for or how many people used it.

Commanders claim Russia has set up sniper positions in civilian homes by clearing out the inhabitants, and allege that some civilians were fired upon as they tried to flee.

Ukraine has blamed Russia for violating ceasefire agreements, although the Russian military denies firing on civilian convoys.

US defence officials estimate that Russia has fired more than 600 missiles from inside or at Ukraine since February 24.

You just can't sit around and wait because if you are in the vehicle you are waiting to be killed

Glen GrantSenior Defence Expert

So far, more than two million Ukrainian refugees have fled their country since the invasion began, more than half of them to Poland.

Ukraine's artillery response is now being stepped up in response to the Russian forces, in what commanders say is the next phase of their attack.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said that Russian troops are having "morale problems".

He said: "They are having supply problems. They are having fuel problems. They're having food problems.

"They are meeting a very stiff and determined Ukrainian resistance. And we still maintain that they are several days behind what they probably thought they were going to be in terms of their progress."

Today, President Zelenskyy has warned the international community would be responsible for a mass "humanitarian catastrophe" if it doesn't agree to a no-fly zone.

He also warned the country is at maximum threat level.

"Russia uses missiles, aircraft and helicopters against us, against civilians, against our cities, against our infrastructure. It is the humanitarian duty of the world to respond," he said in his daily televised address.

He said Ukraine has shown in the past two weeks that they will never give in.

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