‘Syria a killing-field for journalists’ – war photographer to tell Belfast audience

A second talk about the war in Syria has been added to the Ulster Bank Belfast Festival at Queen’s, on Monday 20 October at 9:15pm in the Great Hall Queen’s University Belfast, due to public demand.

A war photographer friend of Marie Colvin and James Foley, both journalists killed in Syria, will tell a Belfast audience on Monday night how he witnessed first-hand the country becoming a ‘killing field’ for reporters.

Paul Conroy was lucky to escape with his life in the Syria rocket attack which killed his journalist colleague in 2012. Since, he has watched with growing horror as friends – like US journalist James Foley, beheaded by the Islamic State group – have lost their lives to the war in Syria.

The veteran war photographer will be in Belfast to tell of his experiences in the midst of the Syrian conflict, when he delivers the Amnesty International Annual Lecture at the Ulster Bank Festival at Queen’s on Monday.

Paul Conroy is a war photographer and film maker, who has worked in some of the world's deadliest conflict zones, from the Balkans, to Iraq and Libya.

In 2012 a Syrian government rocket ripped a hole in his leg and took the life of his colleague, war correspondent Marie Colvin, confirming Syria as the world’s most dangerous place for journalists.

Up to 200,000 people are now thought to have lost their lives in the conflict, including scores of media workers.

Paul Conroy said:

“Covering the war in Syria is now one of the world's most dangerous jobs, with reporters not only facing injury or death but also the rising risk of kidnapping by groups like Islamic State.

“James Foley is the kind of person we need to shine a light into dark places where human rights abusers thrive. They dislike the glare of publicity. Without the likes of him and other good journalists, it will be an even darker place.”

The Festival has added a second Lecture by Conroy (followed by Q&A chaired by William Crawley) to the evening, due to demand for tickets for the first show, which has sold out.

The second lecture will take place at 9:15pm on Monday 20 October in the Great Hall, Queen’s University Belfast. Tickets now available from Festival Box Office: www.belfastfestival.com / 028 9097 1197.

A photo exhibition by Paul Conroy will be available to view before and after the event.

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