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Four journalists killed in Iraq

Three British journalists were killed after coming under fire near Basra while an Australian journalist was killed in a car blast.

india Updated: Mar 23, 2003 15:30 IST

Three journalists working for British television company ITN were killed after coming under fire near Basra while an Australian journalist was killed in a car bombing in northern Iraq that Kurdish officials blamed on a militant group.

Three ITN journalists were found shot dead in Umm Qasr, apparently victims of Iraqi sniper fire, Lieutenant Colonel Nadir Khalil Ibrahim Shaban of the Kuwaiti Police told the Jeddah based Arab News.

However, ITN said in a statement from London that the scribes were missing.

"These journalists were not on the roster of those permitted into the Northern District of Kuwait leading to the Iraqi border. The Northern District has been closed to all journalists since March 18 for exactly this reason," Lt. Shaban said adding "some journalists were being allowed to enter the Northern District restricted zone prior to March 18.

It is not clear whether the journalists went in before March 18 or sneaked in afterwards.

ITN said in the statement that correspondent Terry Lloyd and colleagues Fred Nerac and Hussein Othman were missing after coming under fire at Iman Anas in Iraq on their way to the southern city of Basra.

"One of the crew, Daniel Demoustier, was injured but was able to get to safety. He was not able to see what happened to his colleagues... At present, they are still missing."

In another incident, an Australian journalist was among five people killed on Saturday in a car bomb that went off at a road checkpoint, which according to reports, is near a camp of the Al-Qaeda linked militant group Ansar al-Islam.

First Published: Mar 23, 2003 11:20 IST