As Egypt sinks further into anarchy, pro-Mubarak forces have turned on foreign journalists covering the event. During protests in Cairo's Tahrir Square, gangs loyal to embattled President Hosni Mubarak attacked reporters and broke equipment. Scores of journalists were detained, and some hospitalized (See a full list of the journalists involved). Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemned the actions, and called on the Egyptian government to "ensure journalists' ability to report on these events to the people of Egypt and to the world." Here, five of the most dramatic attacks:
Greg Palkot of Fox News beaten, hospitalized
Fox News correspondent Greg Palkot was hospitalized after a pro-Mubarak gang severely beat him and cameraman Olaf Wiig and tossed a Molotov cocktail at them. "They hit us with their open hands, their fists, sticks, bars, rocks, whatever was around," writes Palkot at Fox News. But even after hospital treatment, the Fox team's ordeal was not over. The authorities detained and blindfolded Palkot and Wiig, "marched [them] lock-step" to an unknown location, "then videotaped and photographed [them] as if in a line-up." They were eventually able to escape the country.
ABC News employees threatened with beheading
Four employees of ABC News were carjacked by a "group of angry Egyptian men," and threatened with beheading. Only the entreaties of ABC's Lebanese cameraman Akram Abi-Hanna "saved [the network's team] from being killed or severely beaten," says Mark Mooney at ABC News. The network's Christiane Amanpour was also "surrounded and interrogated by a threatening crowd."
Al Jazeera's Cairo office destroyed
The Qatar-based broadcaster's office in Egypt's capital was "burnt and destroyed" by what the news channel described as "gangs of thugs." The network — which has been broadcasting round-the-clock coverage of the protests — had previously been ordered to shut down its operations by the Egyptian Information Ministry, and had its accreditation withdrawn.
CBS' Lara Logan detained and expelled from Egypt
Lara Logan, chief foreign correspondent for CBS News, was detained by Egyptian police, and will reportedly be expelled from the country this weekend. Police are said to be "aggressively raiding hotels" in a search for foreign journalists. Before her arrest, Logan reported that the army has "shifted dramatically to a much more aggressive posture, and they have absolutely prevented us from filming anywhere."*
Anderson Cooper hit in the head
The silver-haired CNN anchor is the highest profile American journalist to have been attacked on the streets of Cairo. Cooper and his team have been set upon twice by pro-Mubarak activists, and the "Silver Fox" didn't get off lightly, finding himself on the receiving end of at least ten blows to the head. Cooper broadcast last night from a "secret location" in Cairo, and admitted to being "a little bit scared" at his predicament. The one positive? His ratings have surged since the attack. (Watch Cooper discuss the attacks)
*Since this article was written, Logan suffered what CBS describes as a "brutal and sustained sexual assault and beating" from a crowd of men in the aftermath of President Hosni Mubarak's resignation on February 11. The journalist was rescued by a group of women and an estimated 20 Egyptian soldiers before being flown back to the U.S. She is currently recovering in a hospital.
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