10,000 volunteer soldiers trained for Ukraine here in the UK
The UK has now helped to train 10,000 Ukrainian volunteer soldiers nearly a year after Russia’s full-scale invasion.
The recruits, many with no experience, have been arriving since July to train in safety before returning to defend their home against Moscow’s attacks.
To mark the milestone, Operation Interflex invited the media to observe operations at an undisclosed location in the north of England.
Platoons battled their way through a trench warfare exercise amid smoke grenades – ending in a planned attack on a wood, with hundreds of blanks fired.
But they will face real bullets on their return to Ukraine.
One, Artem, 42, used to work in logistics in Odesa. ‘Before the full-scale invasion, I didn’t have any military experience,’ he said, adding he will now have ‘more strength and resilience on the battlefield’.
Fast-tracked through basic infantry training in five weeks, the recruits have been learning to shoot, deal with explosives and provide medical aid.
Cpl Shaun Carter, of the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, said: ‘We try to make it as realistic as possible.
‘They are extremely motivated. When they turn up they are civilians and in weeks they have gone from civilian to soldier. They have come on leaps and bounds.’
Labour leader’s pledge to Ukraine
Sir Keir Starmer vowed the UK’s commitment to Ukraine would ‘remain the same’ if he becomes prime minister on a visit to the country yesterday. The Labour leader met Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv and visited Irpin and Bucha, the sites of alleged war crimes. ‘There has to be justice,’ he said.
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