Ukrainian veteran cameraman and journalist killed near kyiv while reporting for Fox News


By Oliver Darcy and Brian Stelter, CNN Business

An attack Monday on a Fox News team reporting near the Ukrainian capital Kyiv left two journalists with the channel dead and its correspondent seriously injured, the channel said on Tuesday.

Pierre Zakrzewski, a 55-year-old longtime wartime photojournalist, and Oleksandra “Sasha” Kuvshynova, a 24-year-old Ukrainian journalist working as a consultant for the network, were killed in the attack. Fox News correspondent Benjamin Hall was seriously injured and remains hospitalized.

“Truth is the target,” Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said Tuesday, commenting on the attack on Fox News crew reporters.

Both deaths were announced by Fox News Media managing director Suzanne Scott, who said the team’s vehicle came under fire while they were reporting. Anton Gerashchenko, adviser to the Ukrainian interior minister, blamed the artillery fire by Russian forces.

The deaths come as journalists working in Ukraine increasingly come under fire from criticism. Brent Renaud, an award-winning American documentary filmmaker, was killed in an attack on Sunday that also injured journalist Juan Arredondo. A Sky News team released footage earlier this month showing them being violently ambushed.

On Tuesday, Scott remembered Zakrzewski as a journalist “deeply committed to telling the story and his bravery, professionalism and work ethic were recognized among reporters across all media outlets.”

Scott described Zakrzewski’s talents as vast and said that “there wasn’t a role he didn’t jump into to help out in the field – from photographer to engineer to editor and the producer. She said he “did it all under immense pressure with tremendous skill”.

Zakrzewski, an Irish citizen, was a seasoned photojournalist who had reported extensively on dangerous conflict zones for Fox News. He had been reporting from Ukraine since February.

Scott said Kuvshynova helped network crews “navigate Kyiv and surrounding areas while gathering information and talking to sources.”

“She was incredibly talented and spent weeks working directly with our entire team there, operating around the clock to make sure the world knew what was going on in her country,” Scott said.

Tributes poured in throughout the day for Zakrzewski and Kuvshynova.

Fox News anchor Bret Baier described the two reporters as “wonderful people” who “were lost on this battlefield.”

“It’s a tough day,” he tweeted.

Fox News anchor Bill Hemmer, who broke the news of Zakrzewski’s death over the airwaves, described the photojournalist as “an absolute legend” on the network.

And foreign correspondent Trey Yingst, who reported from Ukraine, remembered both Zakrzewski and Kuvshynova on Twitter.

“I don’t know what to say,” he wrote of Zakrzewski. “Pierre was as good as they come. Disinterested. Brave. Passionate. I’m so sorry this happened to you.

Recalling Kuvshynova, Yingst wrote, “She was talented, well-stocked and witty. She loved photography, poetry and music. We quickly became friends through a shared love of coffee.

Zakrzewski’s counterparts on other networks also remembered him.

Clarissa Ward, CNN’s chief international correspondent, said she had “the great privilege” of having worked with Zakrzewski and “the even greater privilege of calling him a friend.”

“Amazing spirit and immense talent and one of the kindest and kindest colleagues on the road,” Ward wrote on Twitter. “Absolutely heartbreaking.”

Fox News had just recognized Zakrzewski in December as one of the network’s “unsung heroes.” He was described at the time as a reporter who “risked his life in war zones to get the Fox News story.”

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