PARIS, July 7. /TASS/. About 100 French mercenaries are taking part in hostilities in Ukraine, the French radio station RTL reported on Friday.
According to the radio station, the number of mercenaries from France has changed drastically in recent months, since 800 people, mostly men, were eager to take part in fighting in Ukraine at the outbreak of the conflict. About half of these 800 Frenchmen "did arrive" in Ukraine. Having stayed for a few days there, some of them returned to France, whereas the others lingered for some time. There are also those who traveled back and forth from France to Ukraine several times, eventually returning to their homeland.
The RTL reported that "fighters from other countries who were approved by Ukrainian army officials, are being enrolled in the foreign legion, and the companies may bring together citizens from different countries."
It is reported that all in all, the Ukrainian armed forces accept very "few applicants," as Kiev mainly looks for men with combat experience and weapon-handling skills.
When joining the foreign legion, mercenaries sign a contract with the Ukrainian army. They are paid about 500 euros per month, and 3,000 euros for being on the frontline.
The radio station said that French mercenaries have to equip themselves, since the Ukrainian armed forces don’t have the funds to provide weapons for all comers. A Frenchman fighting in Ukraine told the RTL that he had spent 50,000 euros to buy equipment. Many also buy cars to go to the frontline. Some mercenaries use their own money, as they fundraise online.
The RTL did not elaborate on casualties among the French mercenaries.