Veteran Kieran Murphy, now a trained chef, served in Afghanistan for over 10 years with the British Army. Yet Mr Murphy will now head to Poland today where he will surrender his passport and head towards the border of Ukraine in a vow to protect British troops. The Welshman stated he felt compelled to do his part and offer his set of skills.
Speaking to North Wales Live, Mr Murphy said: “When I signed up to work in the military I agreed protecting lives is the most important thing, and that doesn’t change when you leave.
“I put in an application to the embassy because I’ve got qualifications and certificates to work internationally and I’ve got the skills to help people.
“I’m conscious my family are anxious and upset but there’s a bigger situation at play here.
“There are millions of people displaced and things are just getting worse.”
Mr Murphy stated he will be one of 15 ex-military personnel leaving Britain to join the campaign against Putin.
He says he will be working only with British, Canadian and American Armed Forces, and hopes to assist the Ukrainian military in bringing refugees out of the country safely.
But the decision to go wasn’t a straightforward one, as it means leaving 11-year-old son Oliver behind.
Mr Murphy said: “He’s aware of what’s happening and is understandably upset.
“But when he was three months old I went to Afghanistan and I was away a lot, so he knows his daddy has to go away to help people.
“It is difficult because I don’t know when I’ll be coming back but there are children there too who are part of this awful conflict.”
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Keiran’s twin brother Luke, who also lives in Wales said although he understands his brother’s decision, it is difficult to let him go.
He said: “Obviously it’s upsetting he’s going and we don’t know what will happen, and it is quite a sacrifice for him to go out there and leave everyone behind.
“I’m not happy about him going but he’s made his mind up and we have to support him.
“We’re all really worried but proud at the same time.”
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Britain’s Home Secretary Priti Patel has set up an emergency migration scheme allowing Ukrainians to enter the UK and bring their families.
Speaking before a visit to the Polish border to meet Ukrainian refugees, Ms Patel said: “The British government will do everything it can to support the Ukrainian people at this critical moment as they fight for freedom.
“I have developed the Ukraine family scheme following discussions with the Ukrainian government and neighbouring countries and I am proud to have launched it within a matter of days, enabling Ukrainians with family in the United Kingdom to be welcomed safely, quickly and free of charge.
“The United Kingdom stands to shoulder with Ukrainians, providing humanitarian practical support.”
Additional reporting by Annie Owen