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Tributes to Sky News cameraman killed covering Egypt clashes

By Ian Burrell

A Sky News cameraman was shot and killed yesterday while covering the escalating clashes between Egyptian security forces and protesters loyal to the ousted President Mohamed Morsi.

Mick Deane (61), who had worked for Sky for 15 years and had previously been based in Washington and Jerusalem, was taken to hospital but died shortly afterwards. He was working alongside Sam Kiley, the highly experienced Sky News Middle East correspondent.

Mr Deane's colleagues paid tribute to his dedication and professionalism last night. John Ryley, head of Sky News, said he was "the very best of cameramen, a brilliant journalist and an inspiring mentor to many at Sky".

Tim Marshall, the network's foreign affairs editor, described the cameraman (left) as "humorous and wise" and "a friend, brave as a lion but what a heart – what a human being".

ITV newsreader Mark Austin said Mr Deane, who was married with two sons, was "a great friend and my guide for many years in Asia".

Sky News presenter Kay Burley said: "My heart breaks for the family – a true gentlemen. It was an honour to have known him."

The Independent's Kim Sengupta, who spent time with Mr Deane in Cairo during the outbreak of civil unrest last month, said they had discussed the dangers. "We were talking about how things can take you by surprise. At least in an all-out military conflict you take certain precautions but in something like what we were doing in Cairo, you can be more blase. Mick was concerned about risks the Egyptian journalists were taking and that they had no big organisations to back them up."

Several journalists came under fire or reported being beaten yesterday. Gulf News confirmed that its reporter Habiba Abdel Aziz (26) was also shot dead. She was not on assignment but was home on leave. Arwa Ramadan, her sister, said the journalist was in the mosque at Rabaa Al Adawiya Square. "My mom spoke to her close to Fajr [morning prayers], but when she called again at noon, there was no response. She called again, and somebody picked up and told her Habiba was dead."

A Reuters photojournalist was also reported to have suffered a gunshot wound to the leg. And Mike Giglio, a reporter with the Daily Beast news website, said he had been arrested and beaten.

Last year was one of the bloodiest for journalism in a 20-year spell that has seen 2,000 violently killed, according to the International Federation of Journalists.

One hundred and twenty one journalists and media workers were violently killed worldwide last year, up from 107 in 2011.

In February this year, a campaign was launched to push for more successful prosecution of perpetrators of war crimes against journalists and to increase public awareness for organisations that campaign on the issue.

A Day Without News? launched on February 22, the first anniversary of the death of Sunday Times journalist Marie Colvin (56), and French photojournalist Remi Ochlik in a Syrian army artillery strike on a press centre in the city of Homs.

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