And it begins: it took only two days after the tragedy in Japan took the international media by storm for Muammar Gaddafi to take full advantage, today having his forces kill a cameraman employed by Al-Jazeera. The network is reporting that Ali Hassan al-Jaber was killed in an ambush on his reporting team in the opposition-held territories of southern Libya.
Al-Jaber, Al Jazeera reports, had been filming opposition protest with three colleagues when he was attacked and shot to death by a group his colleagues contend had been instigating them for some time because of their coverage of the opposition (Al Jazeera, incidentally, has a highly contentious relationship with the Gaddafi regime, even when allowed to report peacefully). The Washington Post has more on the story,:
Ali Hassan al-Jaber was killed and a correspondent was wounded and hospitalized in what the station described as an ambush on the crew as it returned from an assignment south of the rebel stronghold, which is deep inside opposition-held territory.
Correspondent Baybah Wald Amhadi said on camera that the crew had felt that it was being watched for days, and had informed the management of its Benghazi hotel, which improved security.
Amhadi said the crew’s car came under fire from the rear. Al-Jaber was shot three times in the back and a fourth bullet hit the correspondent near the ear, he said.
Below is Al Jazeera’s account of the incident:
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