Military Training A Must For Media Personel Covering War

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 28 – Media personnel being assigned to war zones or disaster areas will be required to undergo training with Defence Ministry’s Territorial Army Media Team to prepare them physically and mentally for the tasks ahead.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the decision was reached at today’s Cabinet meeting.

“The training session will ensure that media personnel are aware of safety aspects when undertaking their duties,” he said at an Aidilfitri gathering with non-governmental organisations here tonight.

He said media organisations should be willing to send their staff for the training ahead of their assignments abroad.

The minister also called on organisers of humanitarian missions to equip the teams with safety equipment, including bullet-proof jackets.

Meanwhile, Ahmad Zahid said the Burundi army should pay compensation to the family of BernamaTV cameraman, Noramfaizul Mohd Nor, who was killed in a Sept 2 shooting incident in Somalia, in which Burundi troops were believed to be involved.

The African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has apologised over the incident and sacked the four soldiers who are to be sent back to Burundi to face trial.

Noramfaizul, 39, was killed after the vehicle he and other Malaysian media personnel were travelling in to return to their hotel in Mogadishu came under fire.

The media team was covering a relief mission to help famine victims in Somalia.

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