As the death toll of journalists and media workers in the Iraq war moves into double figures, the NUJ has condemned the targeting of journalists as “war crimes”.

A Reuters camera operator was killed when US tanks fired a shell at the Palestine Hotel in the banks of the Tigris in Baghdad. Four staffers were injured. The death of cameraman Taras Protsyuk brought to ten the number of western media workers confirmed as killed in Iraq, nearly all by so-called friendly fire. It is likely that there will be more not to mention Iraqi journalists killed too in the attacks on media sites.

The American military said today’s attack was in response to sniper fire, but journalists at the hotel said they were aware of no such firing.

Two of those killed have worked for the BBC a translator and a camera operator — and two journalists for ITN. Two more were American; one was Australian. Two more have yet to be identified.

In the last few days “coalition” forces have attacked the offices of Al Jazeera and Abu Dhabi Television, as well as several Iraqi state broadcasting sites and the Ministry of Information building where the Baghdad media are briefed.

“It seems certain that the media are being targeted,” said NUJ General Secretary Jeremy Dear. “There must be thorough and independent investigations of all these incidents, and those responsible brought to book.

“The Geneva Conventions require combatants to protect the lives of civilians, yet here we have American forces taking aim at them. These are war crimes.

“The Americans say they have the most precise weaponry in history. Not all of these attacks can be accidents.

“Our member Terry Lloyd was killed, and his crew injured, when their clearly-marked vehicle was wrecked by coalition tank fire. This was three weeks ago but there has still been no explanation.”

And, please see what happend to a photographer aquaintance of mine, Kaveh Golestan, an Iranian Photographer was blow up by a landmine.

Am so sad. He was a nice man, and his work was / still is, splendid. We had exchanged views of photography, and critted each others work. I learnt loads and will miss him.

It appears, that by proportion of the numbers of soldiers / combatants to journalist.

The war in Iraq has resulted in 15 times more journalist killed than soldiers.

Anyone else find this strange?