Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Journalists Marie Colvin and Remi Ochlik killed in Homs

The latest string of violent attacks in the city of Homs has left around twenty people dead, including journalists Marie Colvin and Remi Ochlik. Ms Colvin and Mr Ochlik were reported to be staying in a house in the Baba Amr area which was being used by activists as a media centre in order to inform the world on the events which are occurring. Colvin was a well known foreign correspondent for the Sunday Times for two decades and was respected for her brave reporting in various war zones. Even after events in 2001, where shrapnel left Colvin with one eye, she carried on risking her life in order to report the most accurate and up to date events.
Twenty-eight year old Remi Ochlik was also deemed as a rising star within French photojournalism- winning first prize in the general news category of the prestigious 2012 World Press Photo contest less than two weeks ago. In a ceremony which honoured fallen journalists, Marie Colvin said that "our mission is to report these horrors of war with accuracy and without prejudice... Journalists covering combat shoulder great responsibilities and face difficult choices. Sometimes they pay the ultimate price."
The movements of the journalists which have actually been allowed into Syria are tightly controlled  by Information Ministry minders and many report that journalists are being unwelcomely treating by parties in Syria. Gordon Rayner, in his article for 'The Telegraph' relating to the deaths of the journalists today, wrote that:  'Reporters working in Homs, which has been under siege since Feb 4, have become increasingly concerned in recent days that President Bashar al-Assad's forces have locked on to their satellite phone signals and targeted the buildings they are coming from'.
UK Prime Minister, David Cameron has explained that "this is a desperately sad reminder of the risks that journalists take to inform the world of what is happening".
Thousands have died over the months during the violence against the rule of President Bashat al-Assad, and it is evident that no one in Syria is safe, including those who are bravely risking their lives in order to report these horrors. The tragic deaths of Marie Colvin and Remi Ochlik are sad reminders that Syria is in desperate need of a solution where this violence can be put to an end.