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Two Associated Press journalists shot, one fatally, in Afghanistan

Two Associated Press journalists were shot by an Afghan police commander on Friday in Khost province, Afghanistan. One of the journalists, who had won the Pulitzer Prize in 2005 for her coverage of the Iraq War, was killed instantly.

By
JC Finley

KABUL, Afghanistan, April 4 (UPI) -- Two Associated Press journalists were shot Friday in Afghanistan, one fatally.

Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Anja Niedringhaus, 48, was killed instantly. Her colleague, special correspondent and former Afghan bureau chief Kathy Gannon, 60, was shot twice. Gannon underwent surgery and was listed in stable condition.

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The two were shot while traveling in a convoy that was delivering ballots for Saturday's presidential election. The convoy had arrived in Tani district from the center of Khost city, when an Afghan security force commander named Naqibullah approached their car.

According to an AP freelancer who witnessed the attack, the commander yelled "Allahu Akbar" and fired his AK-47 into the back seat, killing Niedringhaus and wounding Gannon. The shooter then surrendered to his colleagues and was arrested.

AP President Gary Pruitt sent a memo to AP staff Friday about their fallen colleague. Describing Niedringhaus as "spirited, intrepid and fearless, with a raucous laugh that we will always remember," Pruitt noted that "Anja is the 32nd AP staffer to give their life in pursuit of the news since AP was founded in 1846 ... This is a profession of the brave and the passionate, those committed to the mission of bringing to the world information that is fair, accurate and important. Anja Niedringhaus met that definition in every way."

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Niedringhaus won the Pulitzer Prize in 2005 for her coverage of the Iraq War.

[Associated Press]

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