(PRWEB) January 14, 2012
Syrian Expatriates Organization condemns the killing of French journalist Gilles Jacquier , who was killed by an explosion amid a group of journalists in a mission of covering demonstrations in the city of Homs- Syria, on Wednesday January 11 2012. Jacquier was first Western journalist to die in the 10-months uprising in Syria.
Gilles Jacquier, 43, an award-winning war correspondent, who had previously reported from Iraq, Afaganstan, Kosovo and other hotspots for the television channel France 2 TV network, was the first Western journalist to die in the 10-month uprising in Syria. Jacquier was visiting Syria as part of a group of 12 journalists on a government-authorized trip to Homs, according to the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA), and was among group of journalists and reporters on a visit organized by the Syrian authorities in a mission of cover demonstrations in the city of Homs.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said rockets hit the group of journalists, killing Jacquier and six Syrians. The Observatory did not say who was responsible, but activists in Homs blamed authorities. Several others were wounded in the blast.
Foreign journalists have been banned from Syria since the beginning of Syrian uprising in March 2011. Several calls for independent media to have access inside Syria have failed. Journalists who do manage to report from inside Syria are faced with constraints on their movement around the country and are closely monitored by government minders. Syrian Expatriate Organization said that, the Syrian government has repeatedly blamed killings and the unrest on armed groups but has consistently failed to provide evidence to support the claims.
Syrian Expatriates Organization expresses deep condolences to the family and friends of Gilles Jacquier for their loss and ask for an independent investigation to be ordered in Gilles Jacquier's killing.