An advisor to Ukraine’s interior ministry, Anton Gerashchenko, says US video journalist Brent Renaud has been killed in fighting in Irpin, a suburb of Kyiv. Another journalist was wounded, he says.
In a statement posted on social media, Gerashchenko says Renaud “sacrificed his life trying to show the insidiousness, cruelty and ruthlessness of the aggressor.”
Gerashchenko shared a video of an unidentified Ukrainian in camouflage and a police badge, announcing Renaud’s death. The video shows what looks like Renaud’s body on the ground behind him. NPR has not been able to independently confirm this video.
Another journalist for U.S. media tweeted that she had been at the scene and witnessed Renaud’s body under a blanket. Condolences are flooding in, including from the head of Harvard’s Nieman Foundation, where Renaud was a past fellow.
The New York Times also tweeted its condolences, calling Renaud a “talented photographer and filmmaker” who had contributed to the Times in the past. He was not on assignment for the Times at the time of his death, it said. Gerashchenko had shared photos of an apparently outdated Times press ID with Renaud’s name and photo.
He and his brother were covering the war
Renaud and his brother Craig, who is also a filmmaker, had worked on a number of documentaries together. A post on their Facebook page from March 8 indicated they were covering the conflict in Ukraine.
According to their website, the Renaud brothers have spent years “telling humanistic verite stories from the [w]orld’s hot spots,” including Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti and parts of Central America.
The Committee to Protect Journalists quickly condemned Renaud’s killing on Sunday.
“We are shocked and saddened to learn of the death of U.S. journalist Brent Renaud in Ukraine. This kind of attack is totally unacceptable, and is a violation of international law,” Carlos Martinez de la Serna, CPJ’s program director, said in a statement.
“Russian forces in Ukraine must stop all violence against journalists and other civilians at once, and whoever killed Renaud should be held to account,” he added.