Syrian Video Blogger Reportedly Killed in Homs as Shelling Continues

Rami al-Sayed was a Syrian blogger killed during the day before the deaths in Homs of Marie Colvin and Remi Ochlik. Videos by him and accounts of his work are at the link. Colvin’s last interview with CNN, in which she discussed… the importance of bringing such disturbing images to the world’s attention, was illustrated with video from Rami al-Sayed’s YouTube channel.

NYT – Shakeeb Al-Jabri, a Syrian activist in Beirut who has been gathering information from sources in Homs by telephone, wrote late Tuesday on the activist Al-Ayyam site:

“Rami al-Sayed had been known as Rami Abu Maryam and Syria Pioneer. He volunteered his time in Baba Amr as an undercover citizen journalist. He was one of the first activists who risked their lives and braved sniper bullets to film the protests in Homs. Rami also set up a channel to live stream the anti-regime demonstrations and the army’s assaults on the city. Rami never admitted he was the one behind the channel but whenever his colleagues told me he was ”œout” or ”œbusy,” I was sure to find a live feed on his channel.

Interviews with Rami were often too close for comfort. Sounds of gunfire and explosions are common background noise on calls with activists in Homs (and elsewhere in Syria) but on calls with Rami I often heard shells whizzing by. On my last call with him, he was speaking from an activist hideout. He went there to upload videos of a family that had been buried in the rubble of a collapsed building. All members were dead. ”œWe plead with humanitarian organizations to provide safe passage for the women and children. Leave us men to our fate. But for the sake of humanity, let these women and kids go far from here.” I didn’t know what to tell him. The humanitarian organizations are fully aware of the situation. They will not send aid workers as long as bullets are flying. I thanked Rami for taking the time to talk to me and hung up.

When I woke up today I found a live feed from Baba Amr. It was Syria Pioneer’s channel and it showed the army’s brutal shelling of Homs into the eighteenth day. The feed stopped broadcasting at around 11:00 a.m. (local). Later in the evening, I called another activist in Baba Amr as Rami was not online. The activist relayed to me the sad news that Rami was critically wounded by shrapnel and that he was receiving treatment in the field hospital. A few hours later, Rami passed away.” more at link

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