Syria TV journalist shot by unidentified gunmen in Al-Bab

Syria TV journalist shot by unidentified gunmen in Al-Bab
2 min read
07 January, 2021
Baha Al-Halabi, a reporter for Syria TV, was reportedly shot in an assassination attempt in Al-Bab.
Bahaa al-Halabi is currently in hospital in a stable condition [Twitter]
A Syrian journalist has been injured in a shooting on Wednesday evening in Aleppo province, in the latest attack on media workers in the country.

Bahaa Al-Halabi was targeted by masked men after leaving his home in the centre of Al-Bab, northwest Syria, his employer Syria TV said in a statement, a broadcaster affiliated with The New Arab.

Halabi is in hospital but in a stable condition after suffering bullet wounds to his hand, shoulder, and chest, the statement said. He is due to undergo surgery for his injuries.

The Syrian reporter was previously targeted in another assassination attempt, his brother Mahmoud told Syria TV. That time he suffered bullet wounds close to his heart.

Halabi posted a picture of himself recovering in hospital on his Twitter account on Thursday. 

"Thank God. Thank God. Thank God," Halabi said in the tweet, thanking his friends and hoping that the surgery would go well.

Syria TV issued a statement about the targeting of their reporter.

"We at Syria TV condemn this criminal act, whereby a loyal and upstanding colleague who is always seeking to fulfil his duties as a journalist had been targeted," the broadcaster said in a statement.

"This act signifies a direct targeting of media outlets and journalists working to report ground-breaking news and cover updates inside Syria."

Al-Bab, located close to the Turkish border, has been under the control of Turkish-backed Syrian rebel factions since 2017.

The apparent attempt on Halabi's life comes just weeks after unidentified militants shot dead Syrian media activist Hussein Khattab in Al-Bab. Khattab had also faced previous attempts on his life before he was killed last month.

The city has also witnessed several deadly bombings over the past year, which Turkish authorities have blamed on Kurdish militants.

A truck bomb attack on Al-Bab in October killed 18 people including three health workers.

Al-Bab was re-captured by Turkish-backed Syrian rebels in 2016, after a military campaign against the Islamic State group.

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) ranks Syria as one of the worst countries in the world for press freedom.

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) describes it as one of the deadliest countries for journalists.

At least four journalists were killed in Syria because of their work in 2020, according to the CPJ.

"Journalists are the targets of intimidation by all parties to the conflict" including regime forces, Turkish-backed militias, Kurdish forces and extremist groups, RSF says.

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