All three journalists share a distinct vulnerability: they are freelance. Being freelance, no media outlet is directly responsible for their welfare in Somalia. These days, even major media outlets are forced to cut costs on foreign coverage and rely on freelance journalists to get the story from dangerous locations.
So true: as a freelance war correspondent, I don’t even have health insurance. There is zero safety net in this business.
Now, for the good news:
The most recent kidnapping in Somalia, according to CPJ research, involved French journalist Gwen LeGouil. He was abducted in Somalia’s semi-autonomous Puntland region in December 2007, but was released unharmed two weeks later.
(Somali journalists pictured. Photo: me)