Homs children 'waiting to die', says UK photographer


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The Independent Online

The Sunday Times photographer evacuated from Syria after being wounded in a rocket attack that killed his colleague Marie Colvin has said children are "waiting to die" at the hands of soldiers.

Paul Conroy said children are huddled in rooms waiting for Assad's troops to surge into the Baba Amr district of Homs, which the rebels have abandoned.

Speaking from his hospital bed in London, he described the shelling of residential areas as "an indiscriminate massacre of men, women and children."

He said thousands of people remain in Homs, with no power, no water, little food and now snow to contend with.

"In years to come we will say, 'How did we let this happen?' They are dying, they need help," he said, urging the international community to save the city's people.

In an interview with Sky News Mr Conroy praised Ms Colvin, saying: "Marie died doing something she was completely passionate about. She just wanted to tell the truth."

Two French journalists who were smuggled out of Homs after Mr Conroy, arrived home yesterday. Edith Bouvier and William Daniels were met by President Nicolas Sarkozy, who said: "The Syrian authorities will have to answer to international legal authorities for their crimes. The crimes they committed will not go unpunished."

The bodies of Marie Colvin and the French photojournalist Remi Ochlik have been recovered by Syrian authorities and were on their way last night to Damascus, where they are expected to be handed over to diplomats for expatriation.