The Action Group for Palestinians in Syria (AGPS) said that at least 17 Palestinian journalists and media volunteers have been killed in Syria since March 2011.
According to a documentary report released on Wednesday and entitled “Palestinian Media Staff Killed in the Syrian War,” AGPS said that the victims died while covering battles or while providing civilians with relief assistance across the ravaged Syrian cities and towns.
The report shed light on the life-threatening experience undergone by Palestinian journalists and media volunteers in Syria, adding that the victims included academics and volunteers who took on relief activities along with their media work.
Facts on the ground indicated that the number of casualties is much higher due to the circumstances surrounding the announcement of the deaths, the London-based monitoring group said. It added that the majority of the victims died after they forcibly disappeared or due to bombardment, clashes, and torture.
Meanwhile, Syrian journalist Shayar Khalil said that the Assad regime has detained media activists, journalists, and human rights activists since the early days of the popular uprising while releasing extremists from its prisons. These extremists have contributed to the establishment of organizations that sought to hijack the Syrian revolution and which were later used by Assad to justify the brutal crackdown on the peaceful revolution.
Khalil, who was speaking at a conference held on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day in the Academy of Lille, France, stressed the importance of the media work to convey the truth and expose the tactics of the dictatorial regimes. He noted that the Assad regime sought hard to silence journals and media activists through prosecution, murder, and arbitrary detention.
Khalil, who is member of the Action Group for Syrian Detainees, said that they established alternative Syrian institutions that have had a fundamental role in conveying the truth and exposing the atrocities being committed by Assad against civilians to the outside world.
Khalil pointed out that they are working with several parties to shed more light on the human rights situation in Syria and to follow on the issue of detainees by raising this issue internationally and on the European level. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)