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Two Journalists Murdered in Libya

(Author: Libyan Gazette Editorial Staff)

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Abdala Fassouk, the father of Abdelqadir Fassouk, holds a picture of the his son and cameraman, Yusuf Badi, when they were kidnapped. (AP/Manu Brabo)

Abdelqadir Fassouk, a 28 year old photojournalist, was shot dead by ISIS fighters as he was covering the fight between the unity government (GNA) forces and ISIS in Sirte on July 21.

Fassouk was shot while he was reporting on a young fighter with the GNA forces for Arraed television during the fighting with ISIS. This is the second time a photojournalist has been killed in Libya in the past month. Khaled Al-Zintani was in Benghazi on June 24 when he was shot dead.

The day before he was murdered Fassouk raised an issue with the Libyan Center for Freedom of Press over the fact that journalists were not given protective gear to keep them safe in conflict areas.

July 21 was not the first time that Fassouk risked his life to capture and report about events in Libya. During the 2012 Libyan elections Fassouk sustained a gunshot wound to the neck and was kidnapped.

The fighting in Sirte was constantly intensifying and Fassouk regularly found himself in near death situations until the fatal day arrived.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has condemned the murder of Fassouk and Al-Zintani and voiced its concern for the lack of protective gear being provided to journalists in Libya and called for action to be taken to prevent the loss of other journalists.

Philippe Leruth spoke about the two murders of Fassouk and Al-Zintani saying, “These tragic deaths are a reminder that the safety of journalists while they undertake their work must be a priority.”

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Arraed TV

“Farrouk and al-Zintani braved many dangers in order to comply with their duty to inform and thus endangered their lives, but no journalist should have to put their life at risk for the sake of the news.”

Fassouk’s murder has become “a reminder of the terrible price that journalists in Libya are paying to do their jobs,” said The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).

Sherif Mansour, the CPJ’s Middle East and North Africa program coordinator said the “international attention to Libya’s conflict may have faded, but reporters and photographers are still battling dangerous odds to gather and share the news.”

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