A captured British soldier fighting Putin's brutal army feared he was going to be killed after he heard the brutal murder of a fellow captive in the next cell.
Aiden Aslin was sentenced to death after he was captured while fighting for the Ukrainian marines in the besieged city of Mariupol.
After two long months of fighting off Russian attacks, his team ran out of ammunition and, with sincere regret, had to surrender.
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Aslin was taken to Dontetsk for questioning, but things quickly took a sinister turn when Aslin couldn't understand the thick accent of his captors.
Aslin bravely recounted his experience to The Daily Mail.
He said: "I fell to the floor, and he started kicking me in the head. I drifted in and out of consciousness. It was really bad, far worse than I had ever imagined when I was contemplating surrender."
As the Russian continued to smash in his shots, he began to ask the Brit: "How much were you paid"? and "What's your rank"?
At this point, the prison guard started to focus on striking fear into the heart of his prisoner.
Flashing a knife, he viciously asked: "Do you know who I am? I’m the man who’s going to kill you. I’m the bringer of your death.
"Do you want a quick death? Or a beautiful one?"
"A quick death," Aslin replied.
Only interested in causing as much pain as possible, the Russian asserted: "I am going to make sure you have a beautiful death."
At this point, Aslin was thrown into a lice-infested cell with 30 other men, without a toilet, mattress or window.
The concussed war hero was briefly taken out of the horrible space to record a video in which he was forced to say: "My name is Aiden Aslin… I thought in beginning Ukraine was good side. Eventually, I see they don’t make right decisions that would end war."
Covered in cuts and bruises, his mother watched from home as she feared what was going to happen to her son.
The Nottingham man fought hard for his release and was moved to a pre-trial detention centre, but with freedom within touching distance, he experienced the utter horror of listening to one of his prison mates lose his life.
Explaining the terrifying experience, Aslin said: "The worst was something I’ll never forget. It started with screams echoing down the corridor from the processing area that led to our cell block.
"As the poor man got closer, they grew more piercing, more hideous, more inhuman. The victim got so close that we expected our cell door to swing open. Instead, it was the door of the next cell that opened. The beating stopped, and we heard the guard shout, ‘Lie down!’ Then we heard him hit his victim again. And again and again and again.
"But now there were no screams, no grunts, not even a mew of pain. It was just the sound of a truncheon clubbing a body. The clubbing stopped, and we heard the guard leave, telling the other cellmates to clean the man up.
"In our cell, we sat with grim faces. We knew what we had just heard – murder – but none of us dared say that word."
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He continued: "The unspoken rule was never, ever seek to attract the attention of the guards. Or else. So I felt sick with fear when those in the next cell started banging on their door, then shouting: ‘Medic! We need a medic.’
"A guard arrived, and we heard one prisoner say: ‘He’s stopped breathing. We are doing CPR on him, but he needs a medic.’
"Fifteen minutes passed before a doctor arrived and gave the time of death, the only medical attention the prisoner had received. He had been in custody for no longer than one hour, and now he was dead.
"In our cell, the four of us stood in silence, not daring to look at each other, not daring to speak, not daring to breathe. I didn’t give much to my own chances of getting out of there alive."
In July 2022, Aslin was sentenced to death. However, he was later released as part of a prisoner exchange.
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