War reporters lament news ‘black holes’ in IS-held zones

(AFP) – Kidnappings, beheadings, a hatred of journalists: the areas controlled by the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria have become “black holes” of news where even war-hardened reporters dare not venture.

Speaking on the sidelines of the annual Bayeux-Calvados awards for war correspondents in northwestern France, where three of seven prizes went to coverage of the conflict in Syria, journalists used to danger zones said reporting on areas overrun by jihadists had become near-impossible.

“We don’t know what is going on in Fallujah, in Ramadi, in Mosul. These are big (Iraqi) cities,” said Jean-Pierre Perrin, a reporter for Liberation daily.

“It’s a war without witnesses.”

Jihadists from the radical IS group launched a lightning offensive in northwestern Iraq in June and seized the second biggest city Mosul before sweeping across much of the Sunni Arab heartland.

They also control large parts of conflict-ridden Syria, and have not only executed locals who stand in their way but also beheaded American and British journalists and aid workers — to global outrage…

h/t Ken Z.