Second British soldier captured in Mariupol is paraded on Russian TV

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A second British soldier fighting with the Ukrainian army has been paraded on Russian television after being captured in the besieged city of Mariupol.

Shaun Pinner said he had been fighting alongside Ukrainian marines when Vladimir Putin’s forces invaded nearly eight weeks ago.

The 48-year-old former British soldier appeared tired and bruised in a short propaganda video aired by Russian media on Saturday night.

He says: “Hi, I’m 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.

“I was fighting in Mariupol for five to six weeks and now I’m in Donetsk People’s Republic.”

It is not known when the video was filmed or what led to Pinner’s capture. He was fighting alongside his friend Aiden Aslin, 28, from Nottinghamshire, who is thought to have surrendered to the Russian military last week after his battalion ran out of ammunition.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has been in contact with Aslin’s family to support them. However, the UK’s ability to provide consular assistance or obtain information about British citizens in Ukraine is extremely limited owing to the war.

Pinner, originally from Bedfordshire, is believed to have moved to Ukraine four years ago and lived with his wife in Donbas. The former Royal Anglian Regiment soldier said in January that he was based in trenches 10 miles outside Mariupol.

He told the Mail on Sunday in January: “I am here defending my family and adopted city. Russia started this war. It’s funded by Russia and driven by Russia, but we will fight them, make no mistake about that.”

Pinner also spoke of his fear of capture: “I fear for my life. The Russians will treat us differently if we are captured because we are British. This is always on my mind, that I will be captured.”

He said fighting in the trenches was “like hell”, with snipers frighteningly close. He added: “Separatists are now using drones to drop bombs and mortars – along with automatic grenade launchers and [shoulder-fired] RPG rockets. Snipers are always present and there’s small arms fire almost daily.

“Ukrainian forces respond if we deem our lives to be threatened whereas separatists seem to shoot whenever they fancy.

“Sometimes it’s very scary no matter how used to it you are. Sometimes you hear it [explosions] start further down the contact line, then it ripples through your position. That’s why you get time to dive into cover and sometimes you may get a warning beforehand. Snipers are less than 600 metres away.”

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