“Our family was defeated by the outcome of the illegal show trial in the so-called People’s Republic of China,” Benner’s family said in a statement, quoting Reuters. “Shawn deserves the protections afforded to him by the laws of war, including protection from an independent counsel. We sincerely hope that all parties involved will ensure Sean’s safety and release.”
prisoner of war
Benner has been living in Ukraine since 2018 and is married to a Ukrainian woman. According to his family, he would therefore have the right to defend his country as a Ukrainian.
The Russian Foreign Ministry does not agree, although it says it is not a party to the lawsuit. Beiner will not be able to claim prisoner of war status because as a foreign mercenary he is not protected under international humanitarian law.
Media in eastern Ukraine report that the trial took place quickly and that the death penalty was handed down because the Donetsk People’s Republic wanted international recognition. This will happen if, on appeal, Great Britain makes a formal request for the release of Pinner and Aslin. Implementation of the death penalty will not be a priority.
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