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Photojournalist killed by mortar in Iraq

A photographer was killed on 15 June by a mortar round during fighting in Fallujah in the Iraqi province of Al Anbar. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate the Iraqi Journalists Syndicate (IJS) in calling for more safety for journalists working in the Iraqi war zones.

Photographer Fadil al-Garaawi, 45, was employed by Iraq's elite Interior Ministry forces and also contributed to Iraqi news outlets. He was killed when a mortar round struck near a group of journalists and members of the security forces in Fallujah, according to media reports. Three members of the security forces were also killed.

“We are deeply concerned for journalists covering the Iraqi conflict who face daily risks to their life,¨ said IFJ President Philippe Leruth. “More must be done by warring parties to clearly identify media workers and take appropriate measures to avoid putting them in harm's way. In the meanwhile, we call for investigation into the circumstances surrounding Fadil's killing.”

Fallujah has been under IS control for the last two years. Iraqi forces launched a vast offensive last month to retake the city.

IJS reports that al-Garaawi is the 4th photojournalist killed in Iraq since 22 May. The 3 others were Tahseen al-Saidi, killed on 24 May Abdullah Aryaan, killed on 31 May and Ali al Tamimi killed on 10 June.

Iraq remains among the most deadly country for journalists, according to IFJ statistics. More than 300 journalists died since 1995 in the country.

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