Briton John Harding, who was a paramedic in the Azov Regiment, told the Daily Mail that the Russian military tortured him in captivity and forced him to record a farewell video for his daughter because they were going to shoot him.
According to Harding, he, along with other prisoners, was kept in a cramped cell 23 hours a day. He lost a lot of weight because the prisoners were poorly fed.
He also spoke about the “ingenuity” of the Russian military, who converted the old rotary telephone into a stun gun: the prisoner dialed the number, and when the telephone dial returned to its place, the person was beaten with electric current.
According to the British, the prisoners were mocked "for the sake of entertainment." One was stabbed in the leg.
When the prisoners of war were taken to the exchange, no one told them anything, and Harding was sure that they were being taken to be shot, and the bodies would be hidden. He and other foreigners captured by the Russians were taken to the airstrip and told to board the plane. There, Harding said, people got "real food" for the first time in months.
On September 21, Russia, through the mediation of the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, released 10 prisoners of war, among them was Harding, as well as Briton Aiden Aslin and US citizens: Alexander Dryuke and Andy Hyun. The names of four more Britons, a Swede, a Croat and a Moroccan were not reported. All of them were taken by plane to Saudi Arabia.
While they were in captivity, it was reported that Pinner, Aslin and Saadoun were sentenced to death by firing squad. The rest were not aware of the sentences.