The two men asked Prime Minister Boris Johnson to exchange them for pro-Russian politician Viktor Medvedchuk…reports Asian Lite News
Two British fighters captured in Ukraine by Russian forces appeared on Russian state TV on Monday and asked to be exchanged for a Ukrainian ally of President Vladimir Putin who is being held by the Ukrainian authorities.
It was unclear how freely the two men – Shaun Pinner and Aiden Aslin – were able to talk. Both spoke separately after being prompted by an unidentified man. The footage was broadcast on the Rossiya 24 state TV channel.
The two men asked Prime Minister Boris Johnson to exchange them for pro-Russian politician Viktor Medvedchuk.
Medvedchuk was shown asking to be swapped too in a video released around the same time on Monday by Ukraine’s SBU intelligence service via social media. read more
Medvedchuk, in his appeal to Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskiy, asked to be exchanged for the “defenders of Mariupol and its citizens who are there today and have no opportunity for a safe exit through a humanitarian corridor.”
Medvedchuk is the leader of Ukraine’s Opposition Platform – For Life party and an ally of Putin who spent years advocating closer ties between Russia and Ukraine.
Both Pinner and Aslin fought on the Ukrainian side in Mariupol, which is now almost entirely under Russian control apart from the sprawling Azovstal steelworks where some Ukrainian fighters remained holed up.
The unidentified man shown on Russian state TV was seen showing the two Britons a video on his mobile phone of Medvedchuk’s wife, Oksana, making an appeal over the weekend for her husband to be swapped for the two British nationals.