Two British volunteers confirmed dead in eastern Ukraine

The men were attempting a humanitarian evacuation from the town of Soledar when they were killed, their families say.

Andrew Bagshaw, who was killed in eastern Ukraine
Andrew Bagshaw was living in New Zealand when he travelled to Ukraine [The Spearhead Foundation/Handout via Reuters]

Two British volunteers reported missing in eastern Ukraine were killed as they attempted a humanitarian evacuation from Soledar, according to a statement from their families.

Andrew Bagshaw, 48, and Christopher Parry, 28, went missing earlier this month while heading towards Soledar, the salt mining town where Russian and Ukrainian forces were fighting an intense battle for control.

Parry’s family confirmed in a statement released through the United Kingdom’s Foreign Office that both men had been killed.

“It is with great sadness we have to announce that our beloved Chrissy has been killed along with his colleague Andrew Bagshaw whilst attempting a humanitarian evacuation from Soledar, eastern Ukraine,” said the statement, which was released on Tuesday.

Ukrainian police said on January 9 that they had lost contact with Bagshaw and Perry after the two men left Kramatorsk for Soledar on January 6.

Sky News reported Bagshaw’s family as saying the two men were killed while trying to rescue an elderly woman.

Christopher Parry in helmet and flak jacket walking outside a bombed out block of flats in Bakhmut. There is a mangled climbing frame behind him and the building is black where a missile hit
British volunteer Christopher Parry pictured in Bakhmut on January 5. The area was the scene of heavy fighting and the target of relentless Russian bombardment [File: Anna Kudriavtseva/Reuters]

The statement gave no details on the circumstances of the men’s deaths, adding that Parry “found himself drawn to Ukraine in March in its darkest hour at the start of the Russian invasion and helped those most in need, saving over 400 lives plus many abandoned animals”.

Britain’s Foreign Office said it was supporting the families. Bagshaw was also a national of New Zealand where he was living when he travelled to Ukraine.

Source: News Agencies