Gaza Journalists Honor Their Fallen Reuters Colleague

Reuters
Reuters
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Reuters
Reuters

Banned by Israel from the West Bank, Palestinian journalists in the Gaza Strip held a symbolic funeral yesterday for Mazen Dana, a Palestinian television cameraman working for the Reuters news agency and killed in Iraq on Sunday by U.S. troops.

"Mazen is a hero, his killer is a zero," the journalists chanted outside a UN office in Gaza City as they walked in a procession behind an empty coffin covered with pictures of Dana and a camera on a bier.

Dana, a 41-year-old Palestinian, was renowned among his colleagues and internationally for his coverage of frequent violence in his West Bank hometown of Hebron during nearly three years of the intifada uprising.

He was shot by a U.S. soldier on a tank as he filmed near Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison on Sunday.

He was the 18th international journalist to die in the conflict in Iraq and leaves a wife, Suzanne, and four children.

Reuters Chief Executive Tom Glocer, as well as the U.S.-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Reporters Sans Frontieres (RSF) in Paris have urged Washington to investigate how, by the official U.S. account, a soldier mistook Dana's camera for a grenade launcher.

Similar shootings of cameramen by Israeli troops have taken place, with the troops mistaking shoulder mounted cameras for rifles with rocket propelled grenades mounted on them.

Tawfiq Abu Khoussa, deputy chairman of the Palestinian Journalist Union, called in Gaza on the United Nations to launch an independent investigation into Dana's death.

"Dana did not die in vain. He died for the sake of truth and he will remain in our hearts and memories," Abu Khoussa said at the symbolic funeral.

"Dana, we will not forget you. We will all follow in your footsteps," mourners cried.

They will be unable, however, to walk in Dana's funeral procession in Hebron after his coffin arrives from Iraq. Israel bans Gazans from the West Bank.

Comments