— BAGHDAD (Reuters) - A Reuters journalist was killed and three
were wounded in Baghdad on Tuesday when a U.S. tank fired a shell at
the media hotel where they were working.
A Spanish journalist was also wounded.
Television cameraman Taras Protsyuk, 35, a Ukrainian national
based in Warsaw, died after the blast at the Palestine Hotel, base
for much of the foreign media in the Iraqi capital.
Protsyuk had worked for Reuters since 1993 and had reported from
conflicts in Bosnia, Chechnya, Afghanistan and Kosovo.
Samia Nakhoul, Lebanese-born Gulf bureau chief for Reuters, and
Iraqi photographer Faleh Kheiber were both treated in hospital for
facial and head wounds and concussion.
Doctors said their injuries were not serious.
Television satellite dish coordinator Paul Pasquale, from
Britain, was taken to hospital with leg injuries but doctors said he
was not in danger.
The four were part of the 18-member Reuters team in Baghdad.
"We are devastated by the death of Taras, who had distinguished
himself with his highly professional coverage in some of the most
violent conflicts of the past decade," said Editor-in-Chief Geert
"Taras was one of our most experienced television journalists. He
is sorely missed by his colleagues, friends and family."
Linnebank added: "I note that the commander of the U.S. Third
Infantry in Baghdad has now said that one of its tanks fired a round
at the Palestine Hotel.
"The commander said the tank did this after it came under fire
from the hotel. Clearly the war, and all its confusion, have come to
the heart of Baghdad, but the incident nonetheless raises questions
about the judgment of the advancing U.S. troops who have known all
along that this hotel is the main base for almost all foreign
journalists in Baghdad.
"Taras's death, and the injuries sustained by the others, were so
unnecessary, " Linnebank said.
Protsyuk leaves a widow, Lidia, and an 8-year-old son, Denis.
|Reuters Television cameraman
Taras Protsyuk (L) and Spain's Tele 5 (Telecinco) television
cameraman Jose Couso were killed when a U.S. tank fired a
shell at the media hotel where they were working in Baghdad,
April 8, 2003. Reporters saw the tank point its turret gun at
the Palestine Hotel, home to most international media in the
Iraqi capital. Seconds later a single shell slammed into the
Reuters office on the 15th floor with a deafening crash. The
U.S. military said it had been fired on first from the hotel
but journalists there questioned the claim. Photo by
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