A Syrian-born journalist, Maya Naser, was killed on Wednesday while reporting from Syria's capital, according to the Iranian TV station he worked for. He was 33.
Naser was shot dead by a sniper, Iran's state-owned Press TV said. The head of Press TV's Damascus bureau, Lebanese national Hossein Morteza, was also wounded.
They had been reporting on two explosions at the Syrian army headquarters in Damascus. The rebel Free Syrian Army has claimed responsibility for the bombings, which witnesses said were followed by extended gunfire, Al Jazeera reported.
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Press TV, which has been more favorable to the Syrian government in its coverage than most of the Western media, blamed Naser's death on "foreign-backed insurgents."
News Room Director Hamid Reza Emadi is quoted as saying:
"We hold Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, who provide weapons and militants to kill civilians, military personnel and journalists, responsible for killing Maya.
"Press TV will pursue the matter of the murder of Maya and would not let those who killed the correspondent feel like they can kill the media people and get away with it."
If the Committee to Protect Journalists' figures are correct, Naser is at least the 20th reporter to be killed covering the Syrian conflict since November 2011. The CPJ says Syria is currently the most dangerous place in the world for journalists.
According to Press TV's website, Naser was born in Syria and studied in the US. He had worked in the States and several Middle Eastern countries.
In a post from July on his blog, Syria Politics, he wrote:
"Bombs and bullets aren't smart enough to distinguish the right from the wrong, can't determine whether this man deserves killing or not, and defiantly not interested if this person is pro-Assad or against, as long as this piece of kill [sic] will initiate retaliation, and create a chaos.
"Bottom line is: my people are dying and I am still in the line waiting my turn."
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