BBC Journalist Killed in Northern Iraq

By: Thomas Wagner, Associated Press Writer

(AP) A land mine explosion killed one British Broadcasting Corp. journalist and injured another in northern Iraq on Wednesday.

Kaveh Golestan, 52, an Iranian freelance cameraman for the BBC, died instantly when he stepped on the mine as he climbed out of his car in the town of Kifrey, the company said.

Producer Stuart Hughes, 31, was injured in the foot by the explosion, while correspondent Jim Muir and their translator were unhurt, the BBC said. Hughes was being treated in a nearby American military medical facility.

They were part of a four-man BBC team filming at Kifrey, a town in the southern part of the Kurdish-controlled area of Iraq that came under fire by Iraqi forces this week.

The explosion brought to four the number of foreign journalists who have died while in Iraq to cover the war. The others were Gaby Rado of Britain’s Channel 4 News, Terry Lloyd of Independent Television News in Britain, and Paul Moran of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Two of Lloyd’s co-workers are missing.

Golestan, a veteran cameraman and photographer, had worked for the BBC for about three years.

During his career, he also worked for Associated Press Television News and Time magazine. Golestan won acclaim for his coverage of Iraq’s 1988 gassing of the Kurdish town of Halabja, where 5,000 people were killed.

“It was life frozen, life that stopped, like watching a film and suddenly it hangs on one frame,” BBC quoted him as saying later. “It was a new kind of death to me. You went into a room, say a kitchen, and you saw the body of a woman holding a knife where she had just been cutting carrots.”

Golestan covered the Shah of Iran’s departure from Tehran and militants’ 1979 takeover of the U.S. Embassy in the Iranian capital. He once received a suspended sentence after his footage of children inside an Iranian asylum was shown on CNN, the BBC said.

“Kaveh Golestan was an outstanding photojournalist who had worked in support of freedom of expression in his native Iran and elsewhere, and was well known to many Western news organizations,” said Richard Sambrook, BBC’s director of news in London. “Our deepest sympathy goes to his family and friends.”

Golestan is survived by his wife and their 19-year-old son.

On the Net:

Golestan’s Web site: http://www.kargah.com/golestan/

BBC statement: www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice

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