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Last Updated:  Sunday, 23 March, 2003, 14:23 GMT
'Negative signs' over ITN man
ITV reporter Terry Lloyd
Terry Lloyd, whose family is originally from Swansea, is missing
Fears are growing over what may have happened to the ITN reporter, Terry Lloyd, who was last seen being shot at in southern Iraq.

Mr Lloyd, 51, whose family is originally from Swansea, has not been seen since he and three colleagues came under fire as were on the road to the city of Basra.

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

The Ministry of Defence is investigating the incident - a spokesman said it was still unclear what had happened and he could not comment further on whether friendly fire was involved.

Then the whole car was on fire - we were enveloped in flames- it was terrifying
Daniel Demoustier
ITN cameraman

Mr Lloyd - the son of a Swansea-born policeman - is an experienced overseas correspondent for ITN which produces news for ITV, Five and Channel 4.

As well as assignments in Lebanon and Cambodia, he was the first reporter to inside the Kurdish-held town of Halabje in northern Iraq after the chemical attack by Saddam Hussein which killed 5,000 people.

And ITV News won an award for his report from Kosovo - the first by a Western newsman while the region was still in Serb hands.

ITN chief executive Stuart Purvis has told BBC Wales there only "negative signs" about the fate of Mr Lloyd.

Daniel Demoustier
Daniel Demoustier dived into ditch to save his life

Mr Purvis said he had been in touch with Mr Lloyd's family after it had emerged that three members of the missing news team had been taken to Basra Hospital which is still controlled by Iraq.

"We are trying to get conclusive evidence either way and at that point we will clearly tell the family and make an announcement."

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, claimed Mr Demoustier who said he drove on until his vehicle caught fire and then he jumped into a ditch.

Daniel Demoustier, ITN cameraman
"I sincerely hope he managed to jump out of the car"

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