Journalist working for AFP news agency killed in Ukraine

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A 32-year-old journalist working for the French international news agency Agence France-Presse has been killed during a rocket attack near the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut.

The news agency said video co-ordinator Arman Soldin was with a team of its journalists travelling with Ukrainian soldiers when the group came under fire with Grad rockets.

The rest of the AFP team was uninjured.

Russian forces have been trying to capture the city for nine months, making Bakhmut the focus of the war’s longest battle.

“His death is a terrible reminder of the risks and dangers faced by journalists every day covering the conflict in Ukraine,” AFP chairman Fabrice Fries said.

Mr Soldin was born in Sarajevo, now the capital of Bosnia, and a French citizen, according to AFP.

He arrived in Ukraine to cover the war the day after the Russian invasion on February 24 2022 and had travelled regularly to the front lines in recent months.

AFP said it was “devastated” at Mr Soldin’s death, adding “all of our thoughts go out to his family and loved ones”.

In May 2022, French journalist Frederic Leclerc-Imhoff, who was working in Ukraine for BFM-TV, was killed near Severodonetsk in the east.

At least 10 media workers have been killed while covering the war in Ukraine, according to Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, in a speech in Washington on Tuesday, expressed his condolences to Mr Soldin’s family and loved ones.

“Countless journalists are working to expose and report on the truth in extremely dangerous settings,” Mr Blinken said.

“Today, we were devastated to learn of the death of AFP video journalist Arman Soldin in eastern Ukraine.”

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