French authorities have launched an investigation after Russia killed a French journalist in a rocket attack while covering the Ukrainian frontline near Bakhmut in eastern Donbas.
According to the French daily Le Figaro on Wednesday, French prosecutors said they had initiated a war crimes investigation after Arman Soldin (32, pictured), a video reporter for the French public AFP news agency, was found dead while covering the area in Ukraine. The Central Office for Combating Crimes Against Humanity, Genocides, and War Crimes (OCLCH) will investigate his death. The agency plans to conduct a fact-finding investigation in the Ukrainian region.
The deceased was said to have been killed by a rocket launcher at around 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday in a village near Bakhmut. Five reporters, including the deceased, covered the conflict while traveling with the Ukrainian military. The deceased was lying on the ground to avoid attack and was hit by rockets fired by the Russians. No other journalists were injured.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF), headquartered in Paris, France, called for a thorough investigation by the investigative authorities, saying it pays tribute to the courage Soldin, who first ran to the battlefield in Ukraine, showed and his achievements. According to RSF, at least 11 civilians, including reporters, drivers, and local guides, died while covering the battlefield after Russia invaded Ukraine in February last year.
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