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Israeli shelling kills Reuters videographer in Lebanon, 6 other journalists injured

An Israeli shell landed among a group of international journalists covering clashes on the border in south Lebanon, killing a Reuters videographer and leaving six other journalists injured.

International journalists had been covering clashes on Lebanon's border with Israel

A man in a war zone takes a picture of himself.

An Israeli shell landed among a group of international journalists covering clashes on the border in south Lebanon, killing a Reuters videographer and leaving six other journalists injured.

An Associated Press photographer at the scene saw the body of Reuters videographer Issam Abdallah and some of the six who were wounded being rushed to hospitals in ambulances. Images from the scene showed a charred car.

"We are deeply saddened to tell you that our videographer, Issam Abdallah, has been killed," the Reuters news agency said in a statement.

The agency said Abdallah was part of a Reuters crew in southern Lebanon that was providing a live signal.

"We are urgently seeking more information, working with authorities in the region and supporting Issam's family and colleagues," Reuters said. "Our deepest condolences go out to those affected, and our thoughts are with their families at this terrible time."

Reuters said that two more of its journalists, Thaer Al-Sudani and Maher Nazeh, were wounded in the shelling in the border area.

A person is wheeled on a stretcher.

Qatar's Al-Jazeera TV said two of its employees, Elie Brakhya and reporter Carmen Joukhadar, were also among the wounded.

France's international news agency, Agence France-Presse, said two of its journalists also were among the wounded, but the agency did not release their names.

Prime Minister Najib Mikati of Lebanon released a statement condemning Israel's shelling that struck the journalists "during its aggression on southern Lebanon."

United Nations spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric called the deaths "another example of the daily dangers journalists face in covering conflict throughout the world" and said the world body hopes for an investigation into what happened.

"Journalists need to be protected and allowed to do their work," he said during a briefing at UN headquarters.

Later Friday, dozens of Lebanon-based journalists and rights activists gathered outside the National Museum in Beirut to grieve over Abdallah's death and the injury of the journalists.

The shelling occurred during an exchange of fire along the Lebanon-Israel border between Israeli troops and members of Lebanon's militant Hezbollah group.

Israel's United Nations ambassador, Gilad Erdan, told reporters the government will investigate what happened.

"We always try to mitigate and avoid civilian casualties. Obviously, we would never want to hit or kill or shoot any journalist that is doing its job," he said.

"But you know, we're in a state of war, things might happen. We regret them. We feel sorry. And we will investigate it. Right now, it's too early to call what happened there."

The Lebanon-Israel border has been witnessing sporadic acts of violence since Saturday's attack by the militant Palestinian group Hamas on southern Israel, which killed more than 1,300 people in Israel. Retaliatory airstrikes by Israel have claimed more than 1,500 lives.

White House spokesperson Olivia Dalton told reporters on Friday that U.S. President Joe Biden's prayers are with Abdallah's family.

"We know that the work that you all do is incredibly dangerous and today is reminder of that," Dalton said.

Journalists from around the world have been coming to Lebanon out of concern that war might break out between Hezbollah and Israel.

With files from Reuters

Credit belongs to : www.cbc.ca

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