- By Emma Wardy
- BBC News, Live, Ukraine
“I’m not a war traveler or anything like that,” Ajay says from his site near kyiv, where the Ukrainian armed forces are guarding the country’s capital.
“I was so comfortable sitting at home with my cat,” he says in a Belfast, UK accent.
Ajay Spence traveled from Northern Ireland to the Ukraine War a month ago. He first contacted the Ukrainian embassy in Dublin.
After telling them about his previous experience with the British army in Afghanistan and Iraq, he went to Poland before leaving for Ukraine.
The news of the Russian invasion of Ukraine prompted him to act.
“It was so strong to see, you know? It’s like going through a burning house and asking a firefighter to do nothing.“.
Ajay enlisted in the Ukrainian Foreign Army, which is said to have militants From 50 countries, Most UK and United States.
In the cities around the capital Q, his faction engaged in front-line operations that saw some fierce fighting, including Irfin and Pucha.
Assisted in the expulsion of Russian troops from the occupied territories.
Their mission focused on “monitoring, foreclosure, and fire extraction tasks,” says Ajay.
“It simply came to our notice then. This is not like Iraq, Which is a guerrilla war situation; This is a typical war situation against mechanized infantry. “
But the threat is real. Shortly after he arrived, two Georgian fighters from his faction were killed in front of him.
“They were killed in an indirect fire, one bleeding and the other dying immediately. We picked up one of them and tried to save him. There were heavy shelling around us.”
It was a traumatic experience. But what about the risk he puts his own life on?
“I have no illusions about it and I am ready to accept it. I have come to do a job, What to help the Ukrainian people. You think about things like this later and continue the work in front of you.
In the early days of the Russian invasion, the position of the British government on British citizens traveling to war in Ukraine was unclear, but those involved were warned not to travel.
For those who have been in the army of Ukrainian foreign fighters like AjayThey are paid the same as the locals: Basic salary 11-15,000 UAH per month (approximately US $ 400 – US $ 500). Extra pay may be added to those who are stationed at the front during an active war.
Ajay was able to at least communicate due to the number of English speakers. And the reception from the Ukrainians was warm.
“When you are out of the house, people notice you. People know At Comes and shakes hands. I think they should see things like this because they need to know that the world is rooted for them. “
“Ukraine is a beautiful country, and it’s hard to see the devastation and damage and hate that was inflicted on the people here. I grew up during the riots in Northern Ireland, so I have a little more empathy for things. Like that.”
As the Russian military withdraws from the queue in recent days, Ajay says his unit is being reassigned to a new front line. Your task: Recover parts What This time Really Under Russian occupation.
After our interview he surprised me by showing me a picture of him in a different soldier uniform.
Ajay explains that he previously worked extra on the “Game of Thrones” filmed in Northern Ireland, holding a sword instead of the automatic rifle he now has.
The place he is in now is a completely different battlefield, but he says he wants to Stay in Ukraine until the end of the war.
“When I left Belfast I left my apartment so I could stay here as long as I wanted.”
No one knows how long the conflict will last, and questions will inevitably arise as to what will happen to them once the militants return home to England.
But for now, he says the International Legion has been proud of its achievements since its inception a month ago and has been promoting many more on social media to join it.
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