A Cuban Baseball Player Willing to Fight Returns to Kiev After Saving His Family

Tanks filled with soldiers pass over the bridge over the Dnieper River. (Collage)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 28 February 2022 — After “taking his family to safety” in Poland, Cuban baseball player Raidel Arbelay Becerra returned to Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, as he describes in a video that he uploaded to his social networks. “Here the situation is under control,” he mentions as he drives across the bridge over the Dnieper River while a tank with soldiers and a truck pass by.

Arbelay, who applied to join the Ukrainian army reserves to fight Russia but was told it was not necessary, reads some of the messages on the bridge’s signboard asking Russian soldiers not to be the accomplices of Vladimir Putin: “Don’t kill for Putin, instead of flowers, bullets will wait for you,” and “Russian soldier, go back home,” are some of the messages.

On Monday, through his social networks, the player shared the destruction left by a Russian missile in Ukraine. The images show the damage to a vocational school in Vasylkiv. “It’s a shame. We just did a modern renovation, lovely new learning places for children of the whole Kiev region. But nothing happens, we will rebuild it, we have construction workers,” explains the director of the institution.

The player, who arrived in Ukraine in 1996, says, with annoyance: “In this way the Russian aggressors are defending the republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, which always belonged to Ukrainian territory.” He does not forget that a few days ago he had the worst night of his life when a drone fell near his home.

In another of the messages, he shared a video in which he exhibits the strength of Ukrainian civilians before Russian soldiers. “The southern city of Berdyansk was recently taken by the Russian aggressor troops, however the people took to the streets asking them to go home because that army is a puppet of Putin.”

The video shows, according to Arbelay, “that many Russian soldiers have left the city and it is clear that they do not much want to fight against the Ukrainian people.” A sign that “when the people unite not even the devil can stand up to it.”

The athlete regrets that in this war, a group of “small Ukrainian players from the city of Nikolaev, in southern Ukraine” have to exchange the sports training camps for “shelters to save their lives.” Unfortunately, he stresses, “this is what Putin is doing in Ukraine and there are still fools who support him.”

Arbelay says that “Putin needs to get closer to the feet of God, otherwise I know that he will never have peace in his heart and every night in his dreams he will hear the deceased soldiers from both sides and the cries of the murdered children,” and he asks for prayer for “the war to cease.”


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