UK "deeply concerned" by sentencing of Brits by Russia-backed court, PM's spokesman

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LONDON (Reuters) - Britain is deeply concerned by the death sentences passed down to two British men by a court of the Russian-backed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) and will work to try to secure their release, a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.

"We're obviously deeply concerned by this. We've said continually that prisoners of war shouldn't be exploited for political purposes," the spokesman told reporters on Thursday.

"Under the Geneva convention, prisoners of war are entitled to combatant immunity, and they should not be prosecuted for participation in hostilities. So we will continue to work with Ukrainian authorities to try and secure the release of any British national who was serving in the Ukrainian Armed Forces and who are being held as prisoners of war."

(Reporting by Elizabeth Piper and Alistair Smout; editing by William James)

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