Safety of Journalists > Targeted and cross fire killings > Ahmed Abdel Gawad, Mick Deane, Mosab El-Shami


Ahmed Abdel Gawad, Mick Deane, Mosab El-Shami

14 August 2013

Four journalists were killed as Egyptian security forces moved in to break up the pro- Morsi sit-ins in Cairo. Ahmed Abdel Gawad, reporter for Al Akhbar newspaper and for Canal Misr 25, was killed while covering the crackdown at Rabaah al-Adawiya mosque. Sky News cameraman Mick Deane was shot while covering the violence and died soon after he was treated for his injuries. Photographer Mosab El-Shami for Rassd news website (RNN) was also shot dead near the mosque. Habiba Ahmed Abd Elaziz, who worked for the UAE-based Xpress newspaper, died from gunshot wounds but her newspaper confirmed she was not on any official assignment but had gone home on annual leave.

‘‘We are shocked and saddened to learn the loss of our colleagues who died because they believed in the purpose and mission of journalism,'' said IFJ President Jim Boumelha. ‘‘We should continue to honour them by keeping faith with their best aspirations. In their names we can and should do more to find ways of making journalism safer. We express our deepest condolences to their families and colleagues.'

The IFJ has joined the Egyptian Journalists Syndicate in calling on Egyptian Prosecutor-General Hisham Barakat to investigate the killing of journalists and hold those responsible to account.

Calls were also made to the Egyptian authorities that they order security forces to respect the right of journalists to do their job freely and safely. "These killings and the score of injuries indicate how journalists have been targeted by both sides in the violence." added Boumelha.

Both the IFJ and EJS have been investigating reports of around 20 journalists injured while covering the violence. (see list below.) As the Egyptian presidency declared a one-month state of emergency, the IFJ has advised journalists in the country to exercise extreme caution.

Journalists attempting to access the camps were often stopped or detained or came under fire. Among them were Tom Finn of Reuters, Newsweek's Mike Giglio, Al Jazeera's Abdullah Al Shami as well as photographers Mahmoud Abou Zeid, Amr Diab, Ali Ahmed Tareq, Mohamed Hawwari, Khaled Al Faqi and Louis Jammes.

"We are becoming increasingly concerned about the growing incidents of violence in Egypt," said IFJ General Secretary Beth Costa. "We urge the authorities to respect the right of journalists to work freely and safely while covering the protests."

“We also urge media organisations to uphold their duty of care for their staff and to ensure the safety of journalists covering dangerous events like this,'' added Costa.

List of Journalists Injured:

1. Asma Wajih, photographer for Reuters, shot in the leg
2. Tariq Abbas, reporter at Al Watan, shot in the face
3. Mohammed Kamal, journalist at Ad Doustour, suffered gunshot wounds
4. Alaa al-Kamhaoui, photographer at Al Misr Al Yom, shot in the leg
5. Mustapha Shimi, reporter at Veto newspaper, assaulted by protesters
6. Omar Saher working for Al Misr Al Yom and Iman Halal from Al Watan, assaulted, threatened with knives and had their cameras taken away.
7. Mahmoud Kaleed, photographer at An Nahhar channel, assaulted and had camera destroyed while working near Al Mohandeseen.
8. Ahmad Najjar, photographer at Al Misr Al Youm, gunshoot injury in the arm.
9. Mohammed Shanah, journalist at Al Watan, assaulted.
10. Abdellah Mashali, reporter at Al Watan, allegedly assaulted by pro- Morsi supporters.
11. Mohamed Aud, bureau chief at MENA news agency, allegedly assaulted in Aswan by pro-Morsi supporters.
12. Hamada Baazek, bureau chief at As Shourouk newspaper, also allegedly assaulted in Aswan by pro-Morsi supporters.
13. Mahmoud Al Mala, editor at Misr Al Youm, assaulted in Aswan.
14. Daa Ibrahim, bureau chief of Veto newspaper, assaulted in Aswan.
15. Hamada Rassam, photographer at Misr Al Youm assaulted with colleague Ahmed Tarana.