Published on 28 Feb 2012 Sections

Photographer Paul Conroy rescued from Syria

British photographer Paul Conroy is described as being “safe and sound” in Lebanon after being smuggled across the border from the Syrian city of Homs.

Paul Conroy’s wife Kate said: “I have heard that he is out. All I can say is that we are delighted and overjoyed at the news but I am not going to say any more than that at this point.”

His father Les said: “We’ve just had word from Beirut. I’ve got it on the other phone in my other hand,” Mr Conroy senior said.

Father-of-three Mr Conroy was injured last week in the bombardment which killed Sunday Times war correspondent Marie Colvin.

The whereabouts of injured French reporter Edith Bouvier are unclear. On Tuesday, French President Nicolas Sarkozy withdrew an earlier statement that she had also arrived in Lebanon.

Mr Conroy, 47, from Totnes, Devon, appealed for help earlier in a video posted on YouTube.

Lying on a sofa in a darkened room and covered in a blanket, he said he sustained “three large wounds” to his leg in the attack and was being looked after by Free Syrian Army medical staff.

We are delighted and overjoyed at the news but I am not going to say any more than that at this point. Kate Conroy

The freelance photographer and filmmaker, who was also hit in the stomach by shrapnel, added that he wanted to reassure family and friends in Britain that he was “absolutely okay”.

‘Safe and sound’

Diplomats reported earlier that Mr Conroy was now “safe and sound”.

The Times reported that he was carried out of Homs on a stretcher in a nerve-racking 26-hour operation that cost the lives of 13 Syrian volunteers.

The newspaper was told that the photographer was taken stage by stage along a smuggling route between Homs and the Lebanese border 20 miles away, running the gauntlet of a minefield, military patrols and a huge army base.

The latest evacuation reports follow an attempt by the Syrian Arab Red Crescent to rescue the journalists and recover their bodies.

They entered the embattled district of Baba Amr in the city, but they left without the journalists. Three Syrians were evacuated during last night’s operation.

It is understood that the diplomat involved in Mr Conroy’s rescue is also attempting to have the body of Ms Colvin repatriated to the UK.