Two Western journalists among at 20 dead following attacks in Syria

Marie Colvin and Rémi Ochlik are among 20 people killed, according to the New York Times, in Homs, Syria, following deadly attacks from the Syrian government.

Colvin, an American reporter for the Sunday Times, and Ochlik, a French photographer, died after rockets hit the house they were staying in, according to Reuters. Wednesday’s bombardment is an apparent continuation of the Syrian government’s attack on Homs, the center of opposition to President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, following the double veto by Russia and China on Feb. 4 of a United Nations motion to end increasing violence in Syria.

Colvin spoke to PRI’s The World last May about the dangers in Libya, where she also experienced heavy shelling.

Western Journalists Killed in Homs Shelling

World News Videos by NewsLook

“It is very dangerous, I mean, it has to be said, and I think part of that danger is also the expectation of shelling. I mean, it’s very random,” Colvin said of the attacks by Muammar Gaddafi’s forces.

The bombardment that ultimately killed Colvin is the continuation of violence from the uprising in Syria. The United Nataions stopped issuing estimates of a death toll at 5,400 in January because it could no longer verify them. 

“This tragic incident is another example of the shameless brutality of the Assad regime,” said Victoria Nuland, spokeswoman for the U.S. state department.

Last May, President Barack Obama placed sanctions on Assad, as well as six other political leaders, in an effort to quell violence in Syria. However, the sanctions have appeared to a have little effect in doing so.

Hours before her death, Colvin spoke to CNN’s Anderson Cooper about the death of a baby hit by shrapnel.

“Every civilian house on this street has been hit. We’re talking about a very poor popular neighborhood. The top floor of the building I’m in has been hit, in fact, totally destroyed. There are no military targets here,” she said in reference to the notion that the Syrian government only seeks action against terrorists. “There are rockets, shells, tank shells, anti-aircraft being fired in parallel lines into the city. The Syrian Army is simply shelling a city of cold, starving civilians.”

Wednesday’s attack adds to the death of journalists and civilians caught in the crossfire of Assad-led government’s violent response to uprisings in Syria. Other journalists in Syria were reported to have been injured in this week’s violence as well.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Sign up for The Top of the World, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning.