Paul Conroy, injured British journalist, smuggled out of Syria into Lebanon

BEIRUT, Lebanon — Paul Conroy, a British photojournalist, was rescued from Homs, Syria today. However, the whereabouts of a young French journalist who had been with him, Edith Bouvier, remain unknown.

The two were injured in an artillery attack that killed Sunday Times correspondent Marie Colvin and French photographer Remi Ochlik.

Conroy is "safe" in Beirut, according to a diplomat quoted by Reuters. The Sunday Times confirmed his rescue.

Le Monde reported, after much confusion, that Bouvier also arrived safely in Beirut, and French President Nicolas Sarkozy confirmed her evacuation. However, then the reports changed again. Sarkozy has since retracted his statement that Bouvier was safely evacuated to Lebanon, the Associated Press reported.

"It is not confirmed that Madame Bouvier is today safe in Lebanon," Sarkozy said, as he blamed his error on the complexity of the situation.

A management source at Bouvier's newspaper, Le Figaro, told AFP that she had not yet been evacuated.

Several activist volunteers were reportedly killed evacuating Conroy. The evacuation team came under artillery fire while trying to leave Homs, according to the Guardian.

"The [Conroy] evacuation party came under fire twice. Three activists were killed on the first occasion while more were reportedly killed when they came under fire again," the Guardian wrote.

The BBC reported that Syrian opposition and Free Syrian Army fighters began smuggling out Conroy on Monday afternoon.

Reports regarding Bouvier have been conflicting all day. She reportedly refused to be evacuated by Syrian Arab Red Crescent rescuers because she apparently feared they had been infiltrated by government forces, according to the Daily Telegraph.

The Local Coordination Committes, an activist-run information network, said in a press release that Bouvier and "a group of other journalists, are refusing to leave Homs before the Syrian regime issues guarantees that their photographies and recordings will not be confiscated."

The journalists reportedly demanded the Red Crescent first transport out grievously injured civilians, which was refused. The LCC said: "It is to be noted that the journalist Paul was moved out of Homs by the Free Syrian Army, not the Red Crescent."

Conroy was injured in the attack and earlier appeared in a YouTube video to plead for his rescue. 

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