War photographer Tim Hetherington, who received an Oscar nomination for co-directing the Afghanistan combat documentary Restrepo, has been killed in a mortar attack in Misrata, Libya, and several other photographers were gravely injured.
Updated: Pulitzer Prize–winning Getty photographer Chris Hondros suffered a severe brain injury and died several hours later. Photographer Guy Martin received shrapnel injuries and underwent vascular surgery, the Times reported. Michael Christopher Brown also had a shrapnel injury but his life is not in danger.
Hetherington's final tweet, posted on Tuesday, said: "In besieged Libyan city of Misrata. Indiscriminate shelling by Qaddafi forces. No sign of Nato."
The Guardian reports that ten journalists have been killed while reporting on the Arab uprisings this year, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Hetherington is the first Western journalist to be killed during the Libya conflict.
The photographers were among a group caught by mortar fire on Tripoli Street, the main thoroughfare leading into the center of Misrata, the only major rebel-held town in western Libya and besieged by Muammar Gaddafi's forces for more than seven weeks.
Hetherington was born in Liverpool and won a World Press Photo of the Year award in 2007. Restrepo, co-directed with Sebastian Junger, was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature and also won the Grand Jury Prize for best documentary at Sundance. Hondros has covered wars throughout the Middle East, Africa, and in Kosovo and had recently taken photos in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Both men were based in Brooklyn.
Hondros, in an interview with the Chicago Tribune last month, said his experiences in Egypt reminded him of "the bedrock principles that generations of photographers have learned and re-learned: Travel light. Eat breakfast. Be prepared for the unexpected. Guard and hide your images once you make them. Remember how quickly a benign situation can turn onerous."
James Fallows had this to say:
Give an extra thought to members of the much-reviled "mainstream media" who expose themselves to danger and inconvenience to help us understand the world. They are no longer our only ways of gathering such understanding, but they are indispensable parts.
'Restrepo' filmmaker Tim Hetherington killed in Libya; photographer Chris Hondros gravely wounded [NYDN]
‘Restrepo’ Director Is Killed in Libya [NYT]
To Honor Tim Hetherington [Atlantic]
Documentary maker Tim Hetherington killed in Libya [Guardian UK]
"Restrepo" director Tim Hetherington killed in Libya: doctors [Reuters]
10 Question Interview - Chris Hondros of Getty Images [Chicago Tribune]