Footage captured by Independent TV shows a tailback of cars stretching for 40km
In footage captured byThe Independent’s foreign correspondent, Bel Trew, long queues of cars – carrying families and the few possessions they’ve salvaged from the conflict – can be seen stretching into the darkness during sub-zero temperatures.
Many people have been forced to abandon their vehicles and walk for more than 10 hours in a bid to reach the border, where families are waiting in ever-growing numbers to cross into Poland.
Amid the chaos and long queues, some have had no choice but to sleep outside in the freezing cold. Others have been spotted dragging their suitcases through the mud and dirt, in a desperate attempt to seek safety.
The tailback of cars stretches for 40km, pointing to the sheer number of people seeking refuge beyond Ukraine’s borders.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said almost 116,000 people have fled the country since the invasion began on Thursday.
“Latest update is that almost 116,000 have fled to neighbouring countries since 24 Feb – mainly Poland, Hungary, Moldova, Slovakia and Romania,” the group said. “Numbers are rising.”
The Russian military invaded eastern Ukraine on Thursday before capturing the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and advancing on Kyiv.
Speaking on Saturday, Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the country was still in control of Kyiv as he urged friends of the country to help in the fight against Russian forces, who struck the capital with missiles overnight.