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Australian journalist injured in Philippines siege

IANS  |  Manila 

A sniper's bullet grazed the neck of an Australian journalist while he was reporting from the besieged city of Marawi on Thursday, police said.

Australian Broadcasting Corporation Southeast Asian correspondent Adam Harvey got hit by a bullet while taking footage from inside the Marawi City capitol compound, reports Xinhua news agency.

Journalists and aid workers usually converged in the compound "to get a breather" because the compound is supposed to be secure, the report said.

"(Harvey) was inside the evacuation area in the compound and he was trying to reach down to get a good shot of some children playing along the road in front of the capitol," local ABS-CBN news said.

Quoting journalists who witnessed the incident, the report said: "Harvey was having difficulty stooping down to get a good angle of the children so he decided to take off his bullet-proof vest."

The compound sits on an elevated portion of the city and is just across a military camp.

Ernesto Abella, spokesman for President Rodrigo Duterte, said the government is yet to validate reports that a foreign journalist was hit by a stray bullet in Marawi city.

At a press conference on Thursday, Abella appealed to the media, especially the foreign journalists who are covering and are planning to cover the ongoing conflict there in the southern Philippines, to be more objective in reporting the ongoing fighting in Marawi City.

On May 23, heavily armed Maute militants who have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State terror group, attacked Marawi -- which has a population of about 200,000 people -- when the military was searching for an Abu Sayyaf leader hiding in the city.

Almost 100 people including security personnel and militants have been killed, the military said.

--IANS

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, June 15 2017. 12:50 IST
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