French Agency Journalist Killed In Ukraine

Thursday, May 11, 2023 | Tag Cloud

By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News

BAKHMUT (Worthy News) – A young journalist working for French news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP) who “loved his craft” has been killed in Ukraine in a Russian rocket strike near the battle-torn eastern city of Bakhmut, journalists said.

Arman Soldin, a 32-year-old video coordinator, died on Monday when a Grad missile landed close to where he was lying.

Soldin was with Ukrainian soldiers in the town of Chasiv Yar, six miles (10 kilometers) from Bakhmut, where fighting has raged for months, journalists confirmed Tuesday.

His colleagues were with him when the attack happened. The rest of the team was uninjured. “The whole agency is devastated by the loss of Arman,” the AFP chair, Fabrice Fries, said. “His death is a terrible reminder of the risks and dangers faced by journalists every day covering the conflict in Ukraine.”

At least 11 journalists, fixers, and drivers for media organizations have been killed covering the war in Ukraine, according to the group Reporters Without Borders.

Last week a Ukrainian fixer, Bogdan Bitik, was shot dead in the southern city of Kherson, and the Italian correspondent Corrado Zunino was injured.

Russian snipers opened fire on the pair after spotting them next to the Antonivskyi Bridge between the Ukrainian-controlled and Russian-occupied banks of the Dnipro River.


Friends paid tribute to Soldin, describing him as a “fantastic reporter.”

French President Emmanuel Macron paid tribute to Soldin on the social media site Twitter, hailing his “bravery.”

“With bravery, from the first hours of the conflict, he was at the front to establish the facts. To inform us,” Macron wrote, saying he shared “the pain of his relatives and all his colleagues.”

Ukraine’s defense ministry offered its “heartfelt condolences” to Soldin’s family and coworkers in a statement, saying he was killed in a Russian missile attack on Chasiv Yar in the eastern region of Donetsk.

“He dedicated his life to informing the world about the truth. His legacy, as well as his cause, will live on,” it said.

“In France’s National Assembly, legislators from across the political spectrum rose to applaud the journalist as a tribute on Tuesday evening,” AFP noticed.

Born in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Soldin was a French national who began working for AFP as an intern in its Rome bureau in 2015 and was later hired in London, AFP said.

He was part of the first AFP team to be sent to Ukraine following the start of Russia’s invasion on February 24, 2022, arriving on the following day, AFP said.

Soldin had been living in Ukraine since September, leading the team’s coverage and traveling regularly to the front lines in the east and south.

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