Karam Kabishou

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Karam Kabishou, a cameraman for the pro-government Syrian television channel Sama TV, was killed in shelling on December 29, 2017, while covering clashes between the Syrian Arab Army and the opposition militia Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Al-Nusra Front), near the village of Umm Haratin, in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib, according to news reports and the Syrian Journalists Association.

Abdulghani Jaroukh, a correspondent for Sama TV in Hama and Idlib, sustained light injuries in the stomach as a result of the same blast and was transferred for treatment to the National Hospital in Hama, news reports said. 

The shelling was carried out by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, according to reports and local press freedom groups.

Kabishou was filming three soldiers from the pro-Assad Syrian Army walking toward the journalist when a shell exploded near him, according to a video posted by Sama TV on YouTube on December 30. Kabishou was wearing protective head gear at the time, but shrapnel hit his head and killed him, according to a voiceover in the video. The video includes footage that Kabishou shot in the lead up to his death, as he covered the troops’ advances in southwestern Idlib.

In December 2017, the Syrian Army, backed by Russian air power, stepped up its offensive in northern Hama and southern Idlib, the only province that remains fully outside government control and where Hayat Tahrir al-Sham is a dominant force, according to news reports and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

As well as covering the Syrian Army’s operations in Hama and Idlib provinces, Kabishou and Jaroukh covered lighter news items, including art exhibitions and problems with ATMs in Hama.

Sama TV did not immediately respond to CPJ’s emailed request for comment.