Aiden Aslin (left), Saaudun Brahim (center), and Shaun Pinner sit behind bars in a courtroom in Donetsk on June 9.
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has issued interim measures instructing Russia to hold off on carrying out any capital punishment against two Britons who surrendered after they fought alongside Ukrainian troops in eastern Ukraine.
Aiden Aslin and Shaun Pinner, along with Moroccan national Saaudun Brahim, were sentenced to death on June 9 for "mercenary activities" by what Russia-backed separatists called the Supreme Court of the Donetsk People’s Republic. "The European Court decided to indicate to the Russian government...should...ensure that the death penalty imposed on the applicants is not carried out," the judgment , issued on June 30, said.
It also called on Russian authorities to ensure the rights of the two prisoners were respected since they were part of Ukraine's armed forces, lived in Ukraine, and considered the country to be their home. Aslin's family has said he and Pinner were living in Ukraine when the war broke out in February and "as members of Ukrainian armed forces, should be treated with respect just like any other prisoners of war." Britain, the United Nations, Ukraine, and Germany have condemned the death sentences. The court had previously granted similar interim measures for Brahim. His father has said that his son is also a Ukrainian citizen and his rights as a prisoner of war should be respected.