Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, French journalist killed by shrapnel: "He was in Ukraine to show the reality of the war"
Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, a 32-year-old image reporter for BFMTV, was killed on Monday by shrapnel while covering a humanitarian evacuation. The French National Anti-Terrorist Prosecutor's Office (Pnat) has announced the opening of a war crimes investigation.
Writing BFMTV announced on Monday May 30 the disappearance of Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, an image reporter who had worked for the channel for six years.
He was killed while covering the ongoing war, victim of shrapnel during a humanitarian operation on the road to Lysytchansk in the Severodonetsk region, Ukraine.
Maxime Brandstaetter, a colleague who accompanied him, was "slightly injured" during this strike.
The channel deplores a "tragic event" which "reminds us of the dangers incurred by all journalists who have been reporting this conflict at the risk of their lives for more than three months now".
BFMTV is deeply saddened to announce the disappearance of Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, image reporter, killed in Ukraine https://t.co/7aTxYtYCVV pic.twitter.com/6Yj3yom2C8
- BFMTV (@BFMTV) May 30, 2022
The head of French diplomacy Catherine Colonna "demanded" on Monday a "transparent investigation" into the death of the journalist.
"I am deeply saddened and shocked by the death of our compatriot Frédéric Leclerc Imhoff, killed by a Russian bombardment on a humanitarian operation while exercising his duty to inform", tweeted Ms. Colonna, condemning a "double crime which targets a humanitarian convoy and a journalist”.
The French National Anti-Terrorist Prosecutor's Office (Pnat) has announced the opening of a war crimes investigation.
The investigation entrusted to the Central Office for the fight against crimes against humanity, genocides and war crimes (OCLCH) also relates to “the injuries suffered by his colleague Maxime Brandstaetter”, specified the Pnat. At least five other investigations for acts committed against French nationals in Ukraine have been opened by the Pnat since the start of the war.
On Twitter, Emmanuel Macron paid tribute to the young journalist who "was in Ukraine to show the reality of the war".
The President of the Republic sent his condolences to the family, relatives and colleagues of Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff and recalled the "unconditional support of France" to "those who ensure the difficult mission in the theaters of operations to inform”.
I share the pain of the family, relatives and colleagues of Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, to whom I send my condolences. To those who carry out the difficult mission of informing in theaters of operations, I would like to reiterate France's unconditional support.
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) May 30, 2022
Camille Westphal Perrier (with AFP)