Thursday, April 24, 2003Canadian Journalists for Free Expression (CJFE) mourns the deaths of at least two colleagues and the disappearance of two more in the war in Iraq, and calls on all sides in the conflict to do everything in their power to ensure the safety of journalists covering the conflict. "We fervently hope these deaths so early in the war are not a precursor of things to come," CJFE Executive Director Joel Ruimy said. "As hostilities continue, we demand that all sides in the conflict avoid targeting journalists. "Colleagues are working under difficult circumstances in order to give their readers, viewers and listeners the full story of the war. That work should not merit a death sentence." According to reports, correspondent Terry Lloyd, 50, of Britain's ITN was killed Saturday near the southern Iraq city of Basra when his crew came under fire. His colleagues, cameraman Fred Nerac and translator Hussein Othman, are still listed as missing. Cameraman Daniel Demoustier was injured but escaped. The crew was not "embedded" with Coalition forces; they were "unilaterals," gathering news independently. And on Sunday, cameraman Paul Moran, 39, died when a suicide bomber detonated a car bomb in northeastern Iraq. Moran was a freelancer employed by the Australian Broadcasting Corp. ABC correspondent Eric Campbell was injured in the blast. In neither case was it immediately clear that attackers deliberately sought to harm journalists; it appears the colleagues were in the wrong place at the wrong time. "During the war in Afghanistan," Ruimy said, "a total of eight journalists lost their lives covering the conflict. We hope this war does not exact a similarly high toll." CJFE is an association of more than 400 journalists, editors, publishers, producers, students and others committed to preserving press freedom and freedom of expression in Canada and around the world. For more information, contact Joel Ruimy at (416) 515-9622 e-mail: [email protected]
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