Ukraine war in maps: Tracking the Russian invasion

By The Visual Journalism Team
BBC News

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Heavy fighting continues in east Ukraine, with key locations under intense bombardment from Russian forces.

Here are the latest developments:

  • Russian missile have struck Kyiv for the first time since April
  • Russian forces consolidated control over eastern city of Severodonetsk
  • Russian troops are continuing to attack Ukrainian positions north of Kharkiv city
  • Ukrainian positions in the south have come under shelling

Eastern cities under heavy bombardment

Russian officials have said their forces are fighting for the "complete liberation" of the Donbas, which broadly refers to Ukraine's eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, where Russian-backed separatists held significant territory before the invasion.

Russia has made slow but significant advances in the east, at the cost of heavy losses of troops and equipment.

In the past week, Russian forces have taken over the eastern city of Severodonetsk, giving them control of almost all of the Luhansk region.

On Sunday morning Russian cruise missiles were fired on areas far from the frontline.

They hit Kyiv and a bridge near the central city of Cherkasy, which connects east and west Ukraine across the Dnieper river.

Russia's key 90km long central frontline in the Donbas lies to the west of the Siversky Donets river according to the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD).

Following the capture of Severodonetsk, Russian forces are now reportedly attacking the neighbouring city of Lysychansk, according to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).

Further west, Russian forces have continued to launch attacks towards Slovyansk from the direction of Izyum, aiming to regain momentum in the area, according to the MoD.

Russian forces have seen big losses

Russian forces have suffered heavy losses since the invasion began.

The MoD says Russia is likely to have suffered devastating losses among its middle and junior ranking officers. It says these losses are likely to contribute to a loss of morale and poor discipline among lower ranks.

Significant quantities of Russian weaponry have also been destroyed.

As a result, Russia has tried to combine some heavily depleted units, forming what some analysts have called 'Frankenstein forces' to fight in the east.

The MoD believes the "Russian leadership remains reluctant to order a general mobilisation" despite a shortfall in the number of deployable reservists.

Further north, Russian units are vying for control over advantageous defensive positions north of Kharkiv and attempting to protect ground lines of communication to the Donbas, according to the ISW.

War in Ukraine: More coverage

Russia targets full control of south

Russian forces initially made rapid gains in the south, with their main objective being the creation of a land corridor between Crimea, which it annexed in 2014, and areas held by Russian-backed separatists in Donetsk and Luhansk.

But strong resistance from Ukrainian forces near Mykolaiv in the west and in Mariupol significantly slowed Russian advances.

Russia is now fully in control of the port city of Mariupol, after a siege lasting more than two months came to an end on 20 May.

There is a shortage of fresh water and medical facilities in Mariupol and the city is at risk of a major cholera outbreak, according to the MoD.

Some 100,000 people are still in the city.

Russian troops have continued to shell Ukrainian positions across the southern regions of Zaporizhia, Kherson, Mykolaiv and Dnipropetrovsk.

According to the ISW, Russia's current priority in the south is to halt Ukrainian counterattacks, which have succeeded in regaining some territory in recent weeks.

To the west, Russia had aimed to take control of Odesa and cut off Ukraine's access to the Black Sea, but its forces were blocked by a staunch defence in Mykolaiv and forced back towards Kherson by a Ukrainian counteroffensive in March.

Analysts say Russia has continued to reinforce Snake Island in the Black Sea with air defences in order to protect its naval vessels blockading the Ukrainian coast and hindering the resumption of trade.

Russia invaded Ukraine on 24 February, but Ukrainian forces retook large areas around Kyiv in early April after Russia abandoned its push towards the capital.

Areas in the west of the country, including Lviv, have seen missile attacks but no attempt by Russian forces to take and occupy ground.

By David Brown, Bella Hurrell, Dominic Bailey, Mike Hills, Lucy Rodgers, Paul Sargeant, Alison Trowsdale, Tural Ahmedzade, Mark Bryson, Zoe Bartholomew, Sean Willmott, Sana Dionysiou, Joy Roxas, Gerry Fletcher, Jana Tauschinsk, Debie Loizou, Simon Martin and Prina Shah.

About these maps

To indicate which parts of Ukraine are under control by Russian troops we are using daily assessments published by the Institute for the Study of War with the American Enterprise Institute's Critical Threats Project.

To show key areas where advances are taking place we are also using daily updates from the UK Ministry of Defence and BBC research.

The situation in Ukraine is fast moving and it is likely there will be times when there have been changes not reflected in the maps.