Journalists Marie Colvin and Rémi Ochlik killed in Syria

Billboard featuring President Assad and the text 'Allah protects Syria' (Photo: Bertil Videt via Wikipedia)

‘Two Western journalists killed in Syria’
Reuters has reported that Marie Colvin, who worked for the Sunday Times and the French photographer Remi Ochlik were killed in the Syrian city of Homs yesterday when shells hit the house they were staying in.

Roy Greenslade has covered Colvin’s death in his Guardian blog: “She was in a pro-opposition area of Homs that has been under sustained bombardment from government forces since 3 February, causing the deaths of several hundred people.”

The Telegraph remind us that only yesterday Colvin reported on shelling in Homs for the BBC and CNN, in which she described the bloodshed as “absolutely sickening”

Martin Chulov of The Guardian notes that ‘two other foreign reporters as well as seven activists from the ravaged Bab al-Amr neighbourhood were also wounded in the deadliest attack on western media since the Syrian uprising began almost one year ago’.

The Independent noted that ‘US-born Ms Colvin, in her final dispatches had detailed the unfolding conflict in Homs, which has been the focus of unrest against the Syrian president.’

Simon Kelner, the chief executive of the Journalism Foundation said: “Marie Colvin embodied all the qualities required of a great journalist: bravery, integrity and a fearless desire to seek the truth. At a time when British newspapers are under intense scrutiny, her work is a reminder of the fundamental purpose of journalism, and her death, along with the French photographer Remi Ochlik, represents a dark day indeed.”

Philippe Naughton reports in The Times: “Ochlik, 28, was also a frontline veteran having covered his first conflict, in Haiti, at the age of 20. In the past year he had covered the uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya. His photographers had been published in Le Monde, Paris Match, Time Magazine and The Wall Street Journal. Another Frenchman, the TV reporter Gilles Jacquier, was killed in Homs on January 11, the first Western journalist killed in almost a year of conflict. Last week the New York Times reporter Anthony Shadid died of an asthma attack as he was attempting to leave Syria on horseback”

The Sunday Times has put Marie Colvin’s final report ‘We live in fear of a massacre’ outside the paywall.

Colleagues paid tribute to Colvin today. Richard Beeston, Foreign Editor of The Times, said: “I first worked with Marie in Beirut back in 1985. Even then she distinguished herself by her courage and sensitivity. She was almost from another age of foreign journalism — a modern day Martha Gelhorn. She was fearless and never hesitated to get straight to the heart of the story no matter how dangerous. She made sure she focused on the suffering of individuals and brought their stories to light. She was a formidable competitor but also a good and generous colleague. She was also impossibly glamorous and very cool. A great friend and drinking buddy. Funny and self-deprecating. She sacrificed a lot for her work. She had two failed marriages, never raised a family and never had a conventional personal life. She lived for her work and died for it.”

‘John Witherow:’Marie was extraordinary figure in the life of the Sunday Times’
John Witherow, the editor of the Sunday Times has paid tribute to Marie Colvin

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