ABC Cameraman Killed in Iraq

A free-lance cameraman working for ABC News was killed Friday while covering a firefight between U.S. Marines and Iraqis in Fallujah. identified him as Burhan Mohammed Mazhour, an Iraqi citizen who had been freelancing for the network for a couple of months. "We will miss Burhan's dedication and professionalism," said ABC News President David Westin in a statement "Our thoughts and prayers are with his family."
It was not clear whether he had been killed by Iraqi or U.S. fire. Mazhour was shot in the head and later died at a hospital, according to ABC. ABC had not confirmed anything beyond that, but Agence France-Presse was reporting that Mazhour was standing among a group of working journalists "when U.S. troops fired in their direction." ABC has asked the U.S. government to investigate the incident.

Just last week, according to the Comittee to Protect Journalists, a cameraman from Al-Arabiyya, a satellite news channel based in the United Arab Emirates, was shot an killed by U.S. troops at a Baghdad
checkpoint. The same day, three employees of Iraqi TV station Diyala were attacked and killed by gunmen.

Mazhour's death would be the 24th confirmed death of a journalists in Iraq since the beginning of 2003. There were 13 journalist deaths in Iraq in all of 2003, but this would make the 11th killed in less than three months of 2004.

The Pentagon referred comment to Baghdad. The U.S. Army press office in Baghdad had a query in to Fallujah about the incident, but so far had no information, though it said it had received several calls from reporters.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.