Canadian vet Dillon Hillier aiding Kurdish fight with ISIS, video shows
Warning: The video below contains graphic language
A support group for Canadian veterans fighting alongside Kurdish forces against ISIS in Syria and Iraq has sent back dramatic video from the front lines, where a Canadian military veteran can be seen bandaging a wounded man.
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Dillon Hillier, a construction worker from Alberta and veteran of the Afghanistan mission, flew to northeastern Iraq in November and is one of a half-dozen former Canadian Forces personnel who CBC News previously reported had planned to join Kurdish troops.
A number of former veterans formed a support group called the 1st North American Expeditionary Force, which posted the video on Dec. 1 on their Facebook feed.
"I accomplished more good in those 20 hours than the previous 26 years of my life. I dragged a man who had been shot in the face to safety and patched him up, while many others stood around in shock. I am unsure if my actions saved his life but I truly hope so," he wrote.
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Ian Bradbury with the 1st North American Expeditionary Force confirmed the man who wrote the post and appears in the video is Hillier.
The video shows Hillier with what appears to be Kurdish forces bandaging the head of a man and shouting instructions to others assisting him. The sound of gunfire can be heard in the background.
At one point he says, "That's all I can do for him right now, man."
"You're going to be all right man, tell him he's going to be all right," he says.
When asked on Nov. 21 about reports Hillier was in Iraq, Ontario MPP Randy Hillier and wife Jane Hillier said in statement: "There are no words which can adequately describe how proud we are of our son Dillon, including his past service with the Canadian Armed Forces. While we have limited contact with Dillon, we do know he is safe and sound.
"As a proud Canadian, he has always cherished and defended the freedoms we are all afforded in this great country," the statement continued.
Not illegal to enlist in foreign military force
It is not illegal for Canadians to enlist in a foreign militant force, provided it is not a group the federal government designates as a terrorist entity and is not engaged in hostilities against Canada or its allies.
Kurds in the semi-autonomous Kurdish region of northern Iraq have been battling militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria group, also known as ISIL, for months, backed by the United States and the European Union.
Kurdish Peshmerga forces have also more recently entered neighbouring Syria to counter ISIS there, particularly around Kobani.
Canada began deploying fighter jets and support personnel to the Mideast last month as part of an aerial bombardment mission against ISIS.