Reporters Without Borders is upset with the number of detained journalists in Iraq by Allied Forces. The list includes Iraqi cameraman Abdel Amir Hussein who was detained last month in a battle with “insurgents”:
Hussein was injured in the hip in the course of an exchange of shots between an Iraqi insurgent and soldiers of the 1st Brigade of the US 25th Infantry Division on 5 April near Mosul. An initial US army statement said the soldiers fired at “an insurgent” who was “waving an AK-47 (assault rifle) and inciting a crowd of civilians.” The statement continued : “An individual that appeared to have a weapon who was standing near the insurgent was shot and injured. This individual turned out to be a reporter who was pointing a video camera. Regretfully, the reporter was injured during the complex and volatile situation.”
The statement adding that the incident was being investigated. The journalist, namely Hussein, was taken to a US military hospital for treatment to his injuries, which the US army described as minor.
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A subsequent army statement on 8 April said the US forces were holding Hussein and conducting an investigation into his previous activities and possible support for the insurgency. It said there were reasons for thinking he might pose “a serious threat to the coalition forces” and that he would be treated like any other security detainee. Army spokesman Capt. Mark Walter said Hussein had sustained minor injuries and was suspected of involvement in the shooting, along with a number of other people. He also said Hussein was detained after the incident in part because of the statements of persons who witnessed the clashes.