HomeSky News crew shot in Ukraine even after verifying themselves as 'JOURNALIST'

Sky News crew shot in Ukraine even after verifying themselves as ‘JOURNALIST’

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The informants were shot in their bulletproof vests and survived an ambush by a Russian reconnaissance squad.

British Sky News chief correspondent Stuart Ramsay and camera operator Richie Mockler were shot in their bulletproof vests and survived an ambush by a Russian reconnaissance squad on Monday as they drove into the city of Bucha, 30 kilometers from the capital of Ukraine, Kyiv.

They “set off cautiously for the town of Bucha, where a Russian convoy had been destroyed by the Ukrainian army the previous day. Trusted contacts in the town told us it was quiet and promised to show us the convoy and tell us about what had happened.

“The first round cracked the windscreen. Camera operator Richie Mockler huddled into the front passenger footwell. Then we were under full attack,” the correspondent reported in a first-person account published Friday.

Ramsay has described that, at first, the Sky News team thought that it was an error by the Ukrainian Army at a ‘checkpoint’, but when they verified they continued to fire, despite shouting at the attackers that they were the press, then they realized they were in danger.

“We thought it was a Ukrainian army checkpoint firing at us and that it was a mistake, so we started screaming we were journalists, but the rounds kept coming.”

“Producer Martin Vowles, who was driving, got out of the car first, quickly followed by Andrii Lytvynenko, our local producer, leaving me, Richie, and my producer Dominique Van Heerden inside, taking cover in the footwells and across the backseat.”

After a few confusing moments, the producer of the British chain was able to get out of the car and went to a highway barrier, and took refuge for a few moments while the shooting continued and the chief correspondent and the camera operator tried to flee.

“Richie says I then got out of the car and stood up, before jogging to the edge of the embankment and then started running. I lost my balance and fell to the bottom, landing like a sack of potatoes, cutting my face. My armour and helmet almost certainly saved me.”

Later, the camera operator was also able to get out of the car and the five Sky News workers ran to a concrete wall for cover, from where they were able to take cover in an open factory.

“We were convinced the shooters would come to finish us off. A door opened, and three caretakers beckoned for us to come inside their workshop,” narrated the correspondent, who confirmed that the rest of the night they were in the factory waiting for a rescue by the British chain, which was notified of what had happened.

“Outside, the sounds of the battle intensified. We had no idea what was going on, but we were scared that at any moment the garage doors would explode inward, and gunmen would come to kill us,” the journalist said.

The chronicle ends on a more positive note. The Ukrainian police escorted the Sky News team, after hours of uncertainty and gunfire out of the warehouse, to safety. Stuart Ramsay has recalled that “thousands of Ukrainians are dying, and families are being targeted by Russian hit squads just as we were, driving along in a family saloon and attacked”.

Image Credit: Sky News

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