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Last Updated:  Monday, 24 March, 2003, 14:36 GMT
Tributes to war correspondent
ITV reporter Terry Lloyd
Terry Lloyd, a veteran war reporter
Tributes have continued to be made to veteran ITN reporter Terry Lloyd who has been killed in Iraq by 'friendly fire' from Allied forces.

Mr Lloyd, 50, was last seen being shot at in southern Iraq on the approach to the city of Basra.

A statement from ITN said: "We believe his body to be in Basra hospital which is still under Iraqi control."

Mr Lloyd - whose family are originally from Wales - was the station's longest-serving reporter and the first to be killed on assignment in ITN's 48-year history.

ITN said the fate of the other two men missing from his crew was unknown.

It was for being the first reporter to get inside Kosovo that he won his greatest plaudits

ITN chief executive Stewart Purvis said it was now understood Iraqi ambulances had taken the injured men away.

"We've been trying to get through to Basra hospital. There is now sufficient evidence to believe that Terry was probably dead at arrival."

He said it was most likely that fire from US Marines had caused the fatality.

"Here is the man who first alerted the world to the horrors of Saddam Hussein by going to the village of Halabja and finding the Kurds gassed there.

"And this guy dies in the war that is meant to overthrow Saddam Hussein, not through the guns of Saddam Hussein but now we clearly know through so-called friendly fire."

Not 'reckless'

Mr Purvis paid tribute to a much-loved correspondent.

"He was brave, he was courageous, he was committed. He was safety conscious. This was not a reckless man."

Mr Lloyd was married with two children aged 21 and 11 and lived in Buckinghamshire.

Sir David Nicholas, the former head of ITN who worked with Mr Lloyd for many years, told BBC Radio Wales: "I know that his colleagues at ITN, and who used to work with him like me, will be very sad indeed.

"He was, apart from being a very fine TV reporter, a popular one with his colleagues.

'Friend'

"He had been on many assignments in the Balkans and he cut his teeth in the terrible scenes in Beirut in the 1980s."

David Mannion, editor of ITV News, said: "He was my oldest, dearest friend, but I am sustained that he died doing what he did best, at the peak of his powers and at a time of his life when he was personally and professionally the happiest I have seen him."

Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith also paid tribute to Mr Lloyd.

"This is a moment to reflect that some of the best journalism takes place in the line of fire in order to get the kind of stories we have seen.

"The pictures we see in the news are not without cost and our thoughts go out to all the families of those who are reporting in Iraq and the Middle East."

Investigation underway

Cameraman Daniel Demoustier, who escaped with injuries, said they were hit by "friendly fire" aimed at two nearby vehicles containing about a dozen Iraqi soldiers who were killed.

The Ministry of Defence is investigating the incident but has not commented further on whether friendly fire was involved.

Daniel Demoustier
Then the whole car was on fire - we were enveloped in flames- it was terrifying
Daniel Demoustier
ITN cameraman
As well as assignments in Lebanon and Cambodia, Mr Lloyd was known for an award-winning stint in Kosovo.

Mr Demoustier told the Mail on Sunday the team - Mr Lloyd, cameraman Fred Nerac and local translator Hussein Othman - had passed through military checkpoints and been greeted in some areas by jubilant Iraqi civilians when they came across a group of Iraqi soldiers, who followed them.

"Immediately the allied tanks started heavy firing directly at us - rounds were coming straight at the Jeep, smashing the windows and puncturing holes in the bodywork.

"Then the whole car was on fire. We were enveloped in flames. It was terrifying."

Mr Lloyd had been sitting in the same car, but vanished from the passenger seat as they tried to flee the firing, said Mr Demoustier who said he drove on until his vehicle caught fire and then he jumped into a ditch.




WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's John McIntyre
"A veteran of numerous conflicts"



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