The brave photojournalist Ahmad Samir Assem who was killed by army sniper fire and the targeting of Egyptian Media.

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My dear friend, the brave photojournalist Ahmad Samir Assem who was killed by the army sniper fire whilst covering the massacre of the Republican Guards compound, the last image Ahmad captured was the face and rifle of his killer صديقي العزيز، المصور الصحفي البطل أحمد سمير عاصم الذي قتله قناصة الجيش بينما كان يقوم بتغطية مجزرة الحرس الجمهوري.آخر ما صوره أحمد هو وجه و بندقية قاتله.

My dear friend, the brave photojournalist Ahmad Samir Assem
who was killed by the army sniper fire whilst covering the massacre
of the Republican Guards compound, the last image Ahmad captured
was the face and rifle of his killer
صديقي العزيز، المصور الصحفي البطل أحمد سمير عاصم الذي قتله قناصة الجيش
بينما كان يقوم بتغطية مجزرة الحرس الجمهوري.آخر ما صوره أحمد هو وجه و بندقية قاتله.

 

Excerpt from a first-hand account titled, “Speechless Death

“We walked down the korneish street in the Agouza district till we reached the 6th of October bridge. I could see thousands of people climbing the bridge infront of me; hope, pride and dignity took over me. We can do it, God willing. Chanting all the way as we approached Downtown on foot through 6th October bridge, many people in their cars were chanting with us, showing their full support to our march. I started doubting; if all those people support Morsi, then what right does El-Sissi have to raise a Coup?!

As we crossed to the other side of the bridge to avoid getting near to Tahrir Square, we kept chanting “سلمية سلمية سلمية” (peaceful peaceful peaceful) to avoid any clashes with any of the protesters at Tahrir. Suddenly, we found the men standing in the middle of the bridge waving to the women to walk quickly and chant loudly. At the beginning, we did not understand what is going on, but when we asked one of those men, he said that there are some clashes on the other side and asked us to keep chanting loudly. As we descended the bridge, we could see thousands of people ahead of us in front of Maspero already; I was convincing myself by then that it was impossible for clashes to occur when we are in such great numbers, but apparently, I was totally wrong.

In front of Maspero, the men stood to pray Maghrib while the women prayed as they sat on the ground. It was time to take a breath and drink some water to get back to the chanting. Unfortunately, we were unable to enjoy 5 minutes of peace and rest; the men starting asking us to move forward in a hurry. I could see the panic in their eyes; what was going on?! The chanting started again: “عسكر عسكر عسكر ليه؟ هوه إحنا عبيد و لا إيه؟” (Why Military? Are we slaves or what?). I could see in the people around me that something wrong was going on. My doubt became certain when I heard the gun shots as clear as they can be. The men started shouting, urging the women to move faster and keep chanting, but everybody knows women; they worry, and my mother was the first to worry. As my mother grabbed my hand and told me to stay next to her, I turned around to take a peek at what is behind us; I was unable to see the clashes or the thugs, all I could see was fireworks in the sky on the other side, on Tahrir square’s side. With each firework, I could hear a gun shot. With each firework, somebody was injured. I turned back to see guys running towards us shouting for people to step aside; there was a car coming towards the crowds. I could see the women look inside the car then their faces turn pale. I swallowed. Did someone die? I took a glance at the car as it passed by me; there were many people in the car, but on the couch lied two injured people drenched in blood. One of them looked dead with his face covered by red blood, red cold blood; he was shot in the head. The other man’s abdomen was drenched with blood; it looked like he was shot in below the heart. It took the car a glimpse of a second to pass by us, but it will take me years to forget how those martyrs looked like. I looked around me to see a girl drenched in tears, a woman with her hands up in the sky screaming “يا رب” (Oh God) and many others stunned in pale faces. My mother was already crying and saying “ده مات، قتلوه قتلوه”. I stood there, unable to comprehend what I just saw. I felt something hurting in my heart, a lump in my throat and the tears in my eyes. I looked at my mum, I found her crying as she mumbled “they killed him, the killed him”; I was unable to pat on her shoulder or ask her to calm down, how could I?!” Click For more

New York, July 8, 2013–An Egyptian photographer working for a newspaper affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood was killed today while covering clashes in Cairo, according to news reports. Other local and international journalists have also reported being targeted in the aftermath of last week’s ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi.

Freedom and Justice, the newspaper of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, reported today that its photographer, 26-year-old Ahmed Assem el-Senousy, had been shot by a sniper after photographing security forces firing on pro-Morsi protesters. El-Senousy had been covering clashes between security forces and pro-Morsi protesters at the Republican Guards headquarters, which have left at least 54 dead, according to news reports.

“A sniper silenced Ahmed Assem el-Senousy, but his killing has only amplified today’s tragic events,” said CPJ’s Middle East and North Africa Coordinator Sherif Mansour. “Egypt’s path to peace and freedom depends on authorities respecting the rule of law and basic human rights for all people.”

Abeer al-Saady, vice chairman of the Egyptian Journalists Syndicate, told CPJ that his organization would be granting el-Senousy an honorary membership and would be supporting his family with a pension.

The fatality comes after several days of anti-press attacks and government censorship. A live broadcast van belonging to state television was seized by pro-Morsi protesters near Rabaa al-Adwiya in Nasr City on Saturday and used by pro-Morsi channels to cover the protest, according to news reports.

At a press conference today, a military spokesman said last week’s government censorship of several pro-Morsi channels was based on its belief that they were inciting violence, according to news reports. The officer also expelled Al-Jazeera Arabic’s Cairo director, Abdel Fateh Fayed, and an Al-Jazeera crew from the press conference after other journalists in the room said the channel was biased in favor of Morsi, the reports said.

Fayed had turned himself in for questioning yesterday after a prosecutor accused him of disturbing the public order and threatening national security, according to news reports. No evidence was cited to support the allegations. On Saturday, the office director for Al-Jazeera Mubashir, the network’s Egypt affiliate, was released on bail of 10,000 Egyptian pounds (approximately US$1,400) after being arrested on July 3. A number of Al-Jazeera journalists were reported to have resigned in recent days amid disagreements over the station’s political perspective in covering the unrest.

International journalists have also come under threat. The BBC’s Jeremy Bowen was hit in the head by birdshot fired by Egyptian security forces as he covered pro-Morsi protests on July 5, according to news reports. On the same day, the military cut off a live broadcast from CNN’s Ben Wedeman in Tahrir Square. After Morsi opponents accused CNN of bias, Wedeman tweeted yesterday that Tahrir was no longer safe for the CNN crew.

Other international journalists, including Ed Ou from Getty and Matt Cassel of Al-Jazeera English, have said on Twitter that said Tahrir Square was not safe for foreigners. In the press conference today, the military warned non-Egyptians to stay away from the protests.

A German TV crew led by Dirk Emmerich was detained for seven hours today by security forces while covering the clashes outside the Republican Guards headquarters, according to news reports citing Emmerich’s Twitter feed.

In the past two weeks, two journalists and a student have been killed while documenting protests and clashes between supporters and opponents of Morsi. Prior to these deaths, only four journalists had been killed in Egypt since 1992, according to CPJ research.