Former US Marine Trevor Reed, who was released from a Russian prison in a prisoner swap with Washington last year, has reportedly been wounded while fighting as a foreign mercenary for Ukraine. According to CNN, Reed was taken to a hospital in Kiev after being injured and was later evacuated to Germany for medical treatment. The circumstances surrounding his injury are not yet clear.
Reed’s involvement in the conflict in Ukraine is part of a larger trend of foreign volunteers fighting against Russian forces since the crisis began in February 2022. The Russian Defense Ministry estimates that around 11,675 foreign mercenaries have fought against Russian forces, with approximately 900 of them being US citizens. However, most of these fighters have either fled the country or been killed, leaving only about 2,000 still actively involved in the conflict in Ukraine.
Reed’s case is particularly significant due to his previous imprisonment in Russia. In 2019, Reed, a native of Fort Worth, Texas, was arrested for being drunk and disorderly in public. He was later found guilty of assaulting two police officers, endangering their lives while being transported in a police car. Reed grabbed the arm of an officer, causing the car to swerve. As a result, he was sentenced to nine years in prison in 2020.
During his imprisonment in Russia, Reed claimed to have been injured and went on hunger strikes. He reported a significant drop in weight, from 175 pounds to 131 pounds, and even coughing up blood. Reed’s case garnered international attention, with Russian President Vladimir Putin dismissing him as a “drunk and a troublemaker” in a 2021 interview with NBC News.
Reed’s release came as part of a prisoner swap in April 2022. He was exchanged for Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian pilot who had been serving a 20-year sentence in Connecticut for allegedly conspiring to smuggle cocaine into the US. Following his release, Reed returned to the United States and has now reportedly joined the fighting in Ukraine.
The involvement of foreign mercenaries in the conflict in Ukraine has raised concerns about the escalating violence and the potential for it to spill over into international disputes. The situation remains complex, with various factions involved and competing interests at play. The continued fighting has taken a heavy toll on the people of Ukraine, who have endured years of conflict and instability.
It is important to note that the context and details of Reed’s injury while fighting in Ukraine are still unclear. The situation in Ukraine remains fluid, with ongoing efforts to find a peaceful resolution to the conflict. The international community continues to closely monitor the situation and provide support to help bring about a lasting and peaceful solution.