Veteran war correspondent Marie Colvin killed in Syria
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 22 February 2012, 11:53 GMT] Renowned journalist Marie Colvin of The Sunday Times (UK), who is familiar to Eezham Tamils for her coverage on the conflict in the island, has been killed in shelling in Syria together with French photographer Remi Olchlik on Wedensday, agency reports said. The courageous journalist lost one of her eyes in 2001 in Sri Lanka Army shelling while working in the island. She was the only journalist to be present in besieged town of Homs in Syria, covering the conflict there, where she was slain. The shocking news of her death comes a few hours after her coverage on “sickening scenes” from Syria.
Marie Colvin was the last journalist the LTTE's Political Head B. Nadesan and the Director of LTTE Peace Secretariat S. Puleedevan were talking to in May 2009 before they were massacred in one of the worst war crimes of modern times.
Jon Snow of Channel 4 came with the following reaction: “Assad's assassination of Marie Colvin: Utterly devastating: the most courageous journalist I ever knew and a wonderful reporter and writer”.
UK's Mirror said of her death" "Witnesses say the American-born journalist was fired on by a rocket as she and Mr Ochlik fled a makeshift media centre that had been shelled in a heavy artillery barrage by Syrian forces.
"As the centre - which is situated next to a hospital - began to collapse journalists and guides fled the scene in the Baba Amr district and were fired upon again by Syrian soldiers.
"Colvin, who was in her fifties, appeared on Channel 4 and ITN’s News at Ten on Tuesday evening reporting on the bombardment of the opposition stronghold," the Mirror added.
Colvin also won the British press award for Best Foreign Correspondent on two occasions, as well as awards from the International Women's Media Foundation, according to UK's Telegraph.
UK Sunday Times's editor, John Witherow, issued a statement in which he spoke of Colvin as "an extraordinary figure in the life of the Sunday Times" who was "driven by a passion to cover wars in the belief that what she did mattered.
"She believed profoundly that reporting could curtail the excesses of brutal regimes and make the international community take notice...
"Throughout her long career she took risks to fulfil this goal, including being badly injured in Sri Lanka. Nothing seemed to deter her.
"But she was much more than a war reporter. She was a woman with a tremendous joie de vivre, full of humour and mischief and surrounded by a large circle of friends, all of whom feared the consequences of her bravery."
Rupert Murdoch also paid tribute to Colvin, describing her as "one of the most outstanding foreign correspondents of her generation."