Russians blamed for the killing of US reporter in Ukraine

Russians blamed for the killing of US reporter in Ukraine

Monday, March 14th 2022 – 09:36 UTC

The 50-year-old Renaud had worked for the NYT but was not on assignment from them this time around

US film reporter Brent Renaud was killed Sunday in Ukraine when his vehicle was hit at a checkpoint just outside Kyiv, specifically in Irpin.

According to some reports, Russian forces opened fire on Renaud’s vehicle, hitting him in the neck. Initial accounts also mentioned Renaud was working for the New York Times, but it was later denied by the outlet’s management, who nevertheless admitted the newsman had been on their service in the past, although the last time was in 2015.

Ukraine’s Interior Ministry said the Irpin area had sustained intense shelling by Russian forces in recent days.

“This guy was the absolute best,” Christof Putzel told The Associated Press. “He was just the absolute best war journalist that I know. This is a guy who literally went to every conflict zone.” Renaud and Putzel won a 2013 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University journalism award for “Arming the Mexican Cartels,” a documentary on how guns trafficked from the United States fueled rampant drug gang violence.

The 50-year-old Little Rock, Arkansas, native was reportedly gathering material about Ukrainian refugees.

Meanwhile, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said his country would consult with Ukrainian authorities to determine how Renaud was killed. “I will be consulting with my colleagues, we’ll be consulting with the Ukrainians to determine how this happened and then to measure and execute appropriate consequences as a result of it,” Sullivan told CBS.

“This is part and parcel of what has been the brazen aggression on the part of the Russians where they have targeted civilians… and they have targeted journalists,” he said.

President Joseph Biden has insisted his government will not engage Russia militarily in Ukraine, but Sullivan warned that “If Russia attacks, fires upon, takes a shot at NATO territory, the NATO alliance would respond to that.”

News of Renaud’s death was first reported by Kyiv Police chief Andrei Nebytov, who shared images of a New York Times press pass and accused Russian forces of killing the reporter.

A Colombian-American photographer named Juan Arredondo was wounded and told another reporter that they were fired upon after they were driven past a checkpoint to film refugees fleeing the area. Several Western reporters were said to be nearby at the time of the shooting.

The International Federation of Journalists blamed Russia for Renaud’s death, claiming that he “died after coming under Russian fire.” The Committee to Protect Journalists meanwhile called on Renaud’s killers to be brought to justice but admitted it was “unable to immediately confirm the source of the gunfire.”

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