JOURNALISM (Times Of Ocean)- Local journalists, press members and reporters, who have poured into Ukraine from around the world, are risking their lives at every turn to cover the latest developments on the ground.
Iryna Venediktova, Ukraine’s prosecutor general, said that 12 journalists died and 10 others were injured reporting the war that Russia began on Feb 24.
She wrote on Twitter that exposing the truth about Putin’s aggression had become increasingly risky and dangerous.
During the first month of the war, Russia committed at least 148 crimes against Ukrainian journalists and media, according to the Institute of Mass Information (IMI), an independent, non-governmental organization that supports the interests of the Ukrainian civil society and, in particular, responsible journalists.
IMI reports at least six journalists have been killed in Kyiv and its suburbs by Russian forces while on duty. Another journalist has gone missing.
According to the IMI, at least six journalists had been taken hostage and ill-treated by Russian troops.
According to the report, Russian forces targeted at least 10 TV towers in Ukraine, causing complete or temporary disruptions of TV and radio broadcasts in eight regions.
A total of 70 regional media outlets have also been forced to shut down due to war-related threats, according to IMI.
A team of Sky News reporters was attacked by Russian troops last month. Several team members were shot, but they survived thanks to their bulletproof jackets.
The Ukrainian Defense Ministry announced on Twitter on April 2 that photojournalist and documentary filmmaker Maksim Levin had been found dead near Kyiv while reporting “Russian war crimes.” It said Max, who was unarmed, had been killed by Russian troops with “two shots from firearms.”
The ministry added that he is survived by his wife and four children.
Ukraine’s presidential aide Andriy Yermak says Levin, 40, who went missing on March 13 while working near the capital city, was found dead on April 1 near the village of Huta-Mezhyhirska.
Anton Gerashchenko, an advisor and former deputy minister at the interior ministry, confirmed on Telegram that the Ukrainian journalist was reported missing over two weeks ago while reporting from the Vishgorod district, an area of intense fighting.
Levin, accompanied by former photographer Oleksiy Chernyshov, went to Huta-Mezhyhirska on March 13 “to document the consequences of the Russian aggression,” according to LB.ua, a Ukrainian media outlet for which Levin has worked for over 10 years.
“They left the car and went in the direction of Moshchun village. Since then, there was no contact with both men. Later, it became known that intense combat action started in the area where Maksim Levin was going to work. The location and fate of Oleksiy Chernyshov are currently unknown,” it added.
Most of Levin’s documentaries concerning the war in Ukraine were also aired in the international media.
Oksana Baulina of the investigative website The Insider was killed in a Russian shelling in Kyiv on March 23 while on duty.
According to the outlet, Baulina was reporting from Kyiv and Lviv, and was killed when Russian troops shelled a residential area while she was filming the destruction in Kyiv’s Podil district.
It added that she died “during a bombardment while carrying out an editorial assignment.”
According to The Insider, whose editorial offices are in Latvia, another civilian died in the shelling, and two others who were with Baulina were wounded and hospitalized.
Baulina worked previously for Alexey Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation.
As a result of the state authorities adding Navalny’s foundation to the extremist list last year, she left Russia.
Oleksandra Kuvshinova and Pierre Zakrzewski
Oleksandra “Sasha” Kuvshinova, 24, a Ukrainian filmmaker and journalist, was killed together with the Irish journalist Pierre Zakrzewski, 55, a cameraman for Fox News, on March 14 when their car was struck by the incoming gunfire of Russian troops in Horenka, on the northwest outskirts of Kyiv.
British correspondent Benjamin Hall, 39, was injured.
Kakrzewski covered conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria for Fox News.
Kuvshynova served as a consultant for Fox News on the ground.
Brent Renaud, an award-winning filmmaker and journalist, was killed while covering the Russian war in Ukraine.
According to police, the 50-year-old American died near the Russian checkpoint in the town of Irpin in the Kyiv region on March 13.
Renaud, a former contributor to The New York Times, was killed while reporting on refugees escaping the region with a colleague.
Brent was in the region to work on a TIME Studios project on the global refugee crisis.
Ukraine’s police chief said the journalist was targeted by Russian soldiers, while his two colleagues were injured and taken to hospital by Ukrainian rescuers.
Juan Arredondo, a Colombian-American reporter, was one of the injured journalists.
On March 4, Viktor Dudar, a 44-year-old journalist from Lviv, was shot and killed in Mykolaiv, Ukraine’s southern strategic port city on the Black Sea.
He worked as a crime reporter for Express, Ukraine’s weekly newspaper, before volunteering for the war in eastern Donbas in 2014-2015.
The Ukrainian journalist became the paper’s defense correspondent after becoming a reservist and returning from war.
As the Russian war raged, Dudar, then a journalist, rejoined the army to fight the advancing Russian forces.
Yevhenii Sakun, 49, a cameraman for LIVE TV, was killed in a Russian rocket attack on a TV tower in Kyiv’s Babyn Yar area on March 1.
Sakun was working with colleagues when the missile hit the building.
Only his press card identified his body.
In addition to Sakun, four other people were killed in a strike on a TV tower in Kyiv’s Shevchenkivskyi district.
On Feb 26, two days after the war began, Shakirov Dilerbek Shukurovych, a journalist for the information weekly Navkolo Tebe (Around You), was killed.
Near the village of Zelenivka, a suburb of Kherson, he was shot dead from a car with an automatic weapon.
On Twitter, the International Federation of Journalists condemned the killing of a Ukrainian journalist.
The Russia-Ukraine war, which began on February 24, has drawn international condemnation, with the EU, US, and Britain, among others, imposing tough financial sanctions on Moscow.
UN estimates say 1,417 civilians have been killed and 2,038 injured in Ukraine, with the actual number likely higher.
Approximately 4.17 million Ukrainians have fled their country, according to the UN refugee agency, with millions more internally displaced.