EXCLUSIVE: Former British care worker who moved to Odesa for the love of his life and is fighting with Ukraine’s military begs the West to do more to help the besieged city of Mariupol
- Aiden Aslin moved to Ukraine in 2018 after falling for a woman in Mykolaiv
- The 28-year-old Brit is now in his fourth year with the Ukranian armed forces
- When Russia invaded he was stationed in Donbass region where Russian-backed separatists and the Ukrainian armed forces have been fighting since 2014
- In video messages, he revealed how he and his comrades have been pushed steadily back to the outskirts of Mariupol by the Russian advance
A former care worker from Britain who became a Marine in the Ukranian military has released two videos from the outskirts of the besieged city of Mariupol begging Western politicians to do more to aid the stricken city.
Aiden Aslin, 28, moved to Ukraine in 2018 after falling in love with a woman from Mykolaiv, another Black Sea port close to Odesa.
He is now in his fourth year with the Ukranian armed forces and was due to get married this Spring and complete his service in September.
But the war has put paid to any plans.
When Russia invaded he was stationed in the Donbass region where Russian-backed separatists and the Ukrainian armed forces have been fighting a low level war since 2014.
In the video messages, he revealed how he and his comrades have been pushed steadily back to the outskirts of Mariupol by the Russian advance.
Dressed in his military gear, he said of Mariupol: ‘We still control the city. Ukrainians are fighting day and night. The will is tremendously strong and they are not going to be submitted by Russian imperialism.
‘We were pushed back from our defensive front lines on the Donbass sector. Gradually day by day we were pushed back to Mariupol and since we’ve come to Mariupol we are on the outskirts defending it, just on the very outer districts.’
And he claimed that instead of going for military targets such as his company, the Russians were deliberately targeting the civilian population.
He said: ‘Russian forces have continued to target the civilian areas where we are not located. I know this first hand because I’ve watched it.
‘I’ve watched multiple grad vehicles launch their rockets into the civilian areas behind us and this is the Russian military so if they’re as professional as they say they are then they know who they are targeting.’
Aiden Aslin, 28, moved to Ukraine in 2018 after falling in love with a woman from Mykolaiv , another Black Sea port close to Odesa. He is now in his fourth year with the Ukranian armed forces and was due to get married this Spring and complete his service in September
Aiden Aslin is a former carer who previously fought against Isis in Syria. Now he is prepared to fight against a Russian invasion of Ukraine
He made clear the consequences of such tactics: ‘Multiple dead. Casualties every day. I really do feel for them because there is nothing they can do. They are not part of this war. There is no need to target them.
‘You saw in the news the Mariupol theatre where people were hiding where they thought it was safe refuge. That was targeted by an air strike. That entire building is now levelled.
‘I don’t know how much people care about what I say but if there are Americans or British that f***ing care about the s**t that is going on here then pressure your politicians to do whatever else they can do because the air strikes are the biggest problem at the moment.
‘Not because they are targeting us (the army), it’s because they are targeting civilians indiscriminately so I don’t know what else to say. Hopefully you’ll see another video from me in the future.’
Aiden from Newark in Nottinghamshire, was a 22-year-old care worker with some experience of security work when, in 2015, he was so outraged by the Islamic State’s takeover of Syria that he left the UK and joined the Kurdish YPG.
Aslin’s partner – whom he moved to Ukraine for – was from Mykolaiv, which has come under heavy attack from Russian forces trying to reach Odesa. Pictured: A Ukrainian serviceman keeps guard near a building hit in a military strike, as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues, in Mykolaiv, Ukraine, March 21, 2022
Aiden from Newark in Nottinghamshire, was a 22-year-old care worker with some experience of security work when, in 2015, he was so outraged by the Islamic State’s takeover of Syria that he left the UK and joined the Kurdish YPG. Pictured: Aiden appears on Good Morning Britain
He was arrested on suspicion of terror offences when he returned to the UK but was never charged and eventually went travelling when his passport was returned.
It was during those travels that he met the woman who is now his fiancée and he moved to the Ukraine.
He said that she had escaped to Hungary after Russian forces tried to take her home town of Mykolaiv and then shelled the area where she lived.
‘I last saw her in January,’ he added.
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