Journalist for Syrian Media Organization killed in roadside bombing

Beirut, August 23, 2017–The regional director of the rebel-affiliated Syrian Media Organization was killed August 21 in a roadside bombing in the southwestern province of Daraa, according to the group’s executive director Abu al-Majd al-Zoabi.

Osama Nasr al-Zoabi, who was also a correspondent for the group, which covers the war in Syria and the country’s politics, was on his way to report on the humanitarian effects of a Syrian government bombing campaign that took place in the Daraa region in June, Abu al-Majd al-Zoabi told CPJ.

The car he was driving hit an improvised explosive device. In a statement on Twitter, the Syrian Media Organization reported that al-Zoabi’s brother and a nephew were also killed in the explosion.

The news organization is affiliated with the Western-approved Southern Front rebel group.

“The death of Osama Nasr al-Zoabi is a tragic reminder of the risks journalists continue to face when reporting on the Syrian conflict,” CPJ Middle East and North Africa Coordinator Sherif Mansour said from New York. “We urge all sides to guarantee the safety of all civilians and journalists.”

Syria is the most deadly country in the world for journalists. At least 110 journalists have been killed there since the conflict began in 2011, according to CPJ research.