22 Feb 2012

2012: The Horror in Homs

As the bombardment in the Syrian city of Homs continues, Channel 4 News broadcasts a special report from a photographer who captures with shocking clarity the intense assault on the city.

The dangers of reporting or attempting to report from Homs have been tragically highlighted by the deaths of Marie Colvin and Remi Ohlik overnight.

Citizen journalist Rami al-Sayed, who provided live video streams from Homs and posted more than 800 videos on YouTube, was also hit during the shelling of Baba Amr on Tuesday and died some hours later.

The risks for the ordinary people living in Homs have been present for close to a year, but since the massive Syrian government bombardment and assault of opposition districts began on February 3, those dangers have increased massively, and are now almost constant.

“Mani”, a photographer who has been to Homs several times, lived through and filmed the beginning of the assault, the effects on the population, and the response of the Free Syrian Army to the massacre, on the first day, of over 140 people.

While the world has become used to grainy shaky and gruesome footage and images from Homs fed through whatever internet connection is available, Mani’s crystal clear and incredible footage gives perhaps the clearest and most frightening account of what Homs has been like for the past three weeks.

Read more the latest on Syria from Channel 4 News

In an exclusive interview, the French photographer and film-maker ‘Mani’, spoke in person to Channel 4 News of the onslaught he filmed and witnessed during the Syrian army’s bombardment of the city of Homs.

He talked of the resilience of the people he met, the random shelling of civilians, and explained why he was motivated to take such risks – saying the world needs to know what is happening there.

‘Mani’ is the pseudonym he has used to protect his identity, in the event of his returning to Syria. He spoke to Channel 4 News Foreign Affairs Correspondent Jonathan Miller.

Film credit
Producer/director: Teresa Smith
Avid editor: Agnieszka Liggett