Brent Renaud, a former contributor to The New York Times, was fatally shot by Russian forces in Ukraine (Picture: Reuters; Kyiv Police)
An award-winning US journalist and filmmaker has died in northern Ukraine after he was fatally shot in the neck by Russian forces in Irpin, near Kyiv, earlier today.
Brent Renaud was killed and two other reporters were wounded and rushed to hospital, according to Kyiv regional police chief Andrey Nebitov, who shared a photograph of what appeared to be Mr Renaud’s press credentials issued by The New York Times.
The 50-year-old was in a car with other foreign members of the press when Russian troops opened fire on the vehicle, reports say.
Fighting in Irpin has intensified in recent days as Vladimir Putin’s troops attempt to encircle the Ukrainian capital.
A video released on Twitter by the Ukrainian Parliament (Verkhovna Rada) showed Mr Renaud’s colleague on a stretcher in the hospital, describing the horrifying ambush.
‘We are across the first bridge in Irpin, we were going to film refugees leaving’, the colleague explains.
‘We got into a car as someone offered to take us to the other bridge and we crossed the checkpoint and they started shooting at us.
People cross the Irpin river near a destroyed bridge during evacuations (Picture: Reuters)
A man wounded by shrapnel is evacuated as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues, in the town of Irpin outside Kyiv (Picture: Reuters)
‘So, the driver turned around but they kept shooting. There was two of us, my friend is Brent Renaud and he has been shot and left behind. He got shot in the neck. We got split.’
When Mr Renaud’s colleague was interviewed, he was still unaware of his friend’s death, which was later confirmed by Verkhovna Rada and witnesses.
In a statement on Twitter, PBS foreign correspondent Jane Ferguson said: ‘Just left roadside spot near Irpin where body of American journalist Brent Renaud lay under a blanket.
‘Ukranian medics could do nothing to help him by that stage. Outraged Ukranian police officer: “Tell America, tell the world, what they did to a journalist”.’
Cliff Levy, deputy managing editor at the New York Times, confirmed he was not on assignment for the newspaper at the time (Picture: Kyiv Police)
A photo shared online, which Metro.co.uk has chosen not to publish, shows Mr Renaud’s bloodied body partially covered under a blanket.
Cliff Levy, deputy managing editor at the New York Times, said the newspaper was ‘deeply saddened’ by his death but confirmed he was not on assignment for the New York Times at the time.
A statement released by the newspaper read: ‘We are deeply saddened to hear of Brent Renaud’s death.
‘Brent was a talented filmmaker who had contributed to The New York Times over the years.
‘Though he had contributed to The Times in the past (most recently in 2015), he was not on assignment for any desk at the The Times in Ukraine.
‘Early reports that he worked for Times circulated because he was wearing a Times press badge that he had been issued for an assignment many years ago.’
Tributes have poured in for Mr Renaud, with his colleagues describing him as a ‘filmmaker without parallel’ and a ‘talented photographer’.
He had worked for a number of American news and media organizations in the past, including HBO, NBC and The New York Times, and was a Peabody and DuPont Award winning filmmaker,
In the last 20 years, he had been producing films and television programs with his brother Craig, focusing on hot-spots like the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
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