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Last Updated:  Thursday, 3 April, 2003, 11:49 GMT 12:49 UK
Iraq blast - news man 'recovers'
Stuart Hughes
Stuart pictured in snow-covered Istanbul
The Welsh-born BBC producer injured in northern Iraq during a landmine explosion which killed cameraman Kaveh Golestan, is expected to return to the UK later this week.

Stuart Hughes received injuries to his foot during the blast after Iranian Mr Golestan - Pulitzer-prize winning photographer - stepped out of a car onto a landmine.

The 31-year-old producer, originally from Cardiff, is reported to be "comfortable" following surgery at a US medical base.

He is due to be transferred to Erbil near the Turkish border before returning to Europe over the next few days.

Friends of Mr Hughes said he has been able to speak to his girlfriend, with whom he lives with in London.

His parents, who live in Cardiff, were too upset to talk about his injuries, but were reported to be "immensely relieved" that he was not more seriously hurt.

Mr Hughes began his career with the BBC at its Welsh headquarters in Cardiff.

He quickly made his mark in the newsroom as one of the most energetic and promising producers
Matt Morris, editor
He started as a researcher with the radio news programme Good Morning Wales, before being promoted to producer.

He moved to work in radio news in London in 1997 as a broadcast journalist.

His boss, editor Matt Morris said: "He quickly made his mark in the newsroom as one of the most energetic and promising producers and was promoted to senior broadcast journalist within three years.

"For the past few years, he's been exploiting his keen interest in foreign news in a series of attachments to World Newsgathering.

"Before Iraq, he had a very successful and effective period producing in the Jerusalem bureau.

"He's highly thought of and admired by all his colleagues."

As well as news journalism, Mr Hughes also covers ice hockey for the BBC Sport Online website.

Kaveh Golestan
Kaveh Golestan was killed by a landmine
However, it is a personal project which has recently brought him to the attention of a wider audience.

Since going out to Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq to report on the crisis, he has set up a weblog, giving personal coverage and perspectives on the war.

The website has been praised in papers in the UK and Ireland, including The Guardian, and it has featured in an Austrian television programme.

Mr Hughes made his most recent log just hours before he was injured.

In it, he spoke of the strain reporting the war and being away from home was beginning to take on the journalists he was with.

He said: "It's dawning on some of us that even if we wanted to go home, we couldn't."




SEE ALSO:
BBC cameraman dies in Iraq
02 Apr 03  |  UK
Australian journalist mourned
02 Apr 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Reporters' Log: War in Iraq
03 Apr 03  |  In Depth


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