A former British soldier who fought with the Ukrainian army has appeared on Russian television in a video where he identifies himself as: “Shaun Pinner. I am a citizen of the UK. I was captured in Mariupol. I am part of the 36 Brigade First Battalion Ukrainian Marines.”
His appearance comes days after Russian media showed another captured British fighter, Aiden Aslin. Pinner, 48, is believed to have moved to Ukraine four years ago and lived with his wife in Donbas.
In January he told the Daily Mail he was fighting to defend his family and “adopted city”. He also said he feared for his life as “the Russians will treat us differently if we are captured because we are British”, Aljazeera reported.
Meanwhile,, An estimated 6,824 foreign mercenaries from 63 countries have come to Ukraine to fight for Volodymyr Zelensky’s government, the Russian Defense Ministry stated on Sunday. Of these, 1,035 have been “destroyed,” while several thousand remain. Four hundred foreign fighters are holed up in Mariupol, where nationalist forces, including the neo-Nazi fighters, have refused to surrender, RT reported.
The most numerous group of foreign fighters (1,717) arrived from Poland, while around 1,500 came from the US, Canada and Romania. Up to 300 people each came from the UK and Georgia, while 193 arrived from the Turkish-controlled areas of Syria.
These figures were announced on Sunday by Defense Ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov. According to the general, 1,035 foreign mercenaries have been killed by Russian forces and 912 fled Ukraine, leaving 4,877 active in the cities of Kiev, Kharkov, Odessa, Nikolaev and Mariupol.
Roughly 400 of these foreign fighters remain embedded with Ukrainian nationalist battalions in the besieged port city of Mariupol, Konashenkov stated. With most of the city under Russian control, these forces have dug in at the sprawling Azovstal metallurgical plant, a gargantuan Soviet-built factory complex spread over 11 square kilometers.