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Watchdog: Hundreds of media workers killed in Syria

Syrian citizen journalist Hadi Abdullah
Syrian citizen journalist Hadi Abdullah

Hundreds of media workers have been killed and/or detained in Syria since conflict erupted in that country in 2011, a UK-based watchdog reported Friday, Anadolu Agency reports.

During this period, 695 media workers — including numerous foreign nationals — have been killed, while 421 were detained by the Syrian regime, according to a report released by the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, which is marked on May 3.

A total of 546 press workers, including five foreigners, were killed in attacks by the Assad regime, while 20 others were killed by Russian airstrikes, the SNHR reported.

Four journalists were killed by the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which is closely affiliated with the PKK terrorist group, according to the report.

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“The SDF has suppressed journalists and arrested and tortured dissenters in areas under its control,” the report reads.

Meanwhile, 64 journalists — including two women and three foreigners — were killed by Daesh terrorists, while 32 others were killed by armed opposition groups, according to the NGO.

The report goes on to assert that at least one journalist was killed in an attack by a U.S.-led military coalition, while 28 others were killed by unknown armed groups operating in the war-torn country.

Since the Syria conflict began in 2011, 1,136 media workers have been abducted, 421 of whom have yet to be released, the SNHR report notes.

Of 180 countries, Syria currently ranks 174th on a press freedom index compiled by Reporters without Borders, a Paris-based NGO that advocates for press liberties.

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