He plays video games, hangs out with his friends and even collects welfare payments from his home country of Belgium. On the outside, 28-year-old Younnes Delefortrie looks like many young Belgians, but this former altar boy joined ISIS in Syria and now he’s back on the streets of Belgium.
“I’m not a Belgian, I am Muslim. Every Muslim in the world, even if he has a beard from one meter to one millimeter, has to believe in caliphate,” says Delefortrie.
CNN senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward has a rare, unfiltered look at the life and mind of an ISIS soldier. ISIS: Behind the Mask premieres Friday, March 31 at 10pm ET on CNN/U.S. and CNN International. FULL POST
The Overseas Press Club of America has honored CNN’s ‘Undercover in Syria’ series with the David Kaplan Award for Best TV or video spot news reporting from abroad. They will present the award, which honors the finest international reporting, at its annual ceremony on Thursday, April 27 in New York. CNN President Jeff Zucker will be on hand to deliver the keynote address.
Reported by senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward and produced by Salma Abdelaziz, ‘Undercover in Syria’ took viewers inside rebel-held territory for an exclusive series of reports on what life was like under the bombs. CNN was the only Western media to witness the effects of Russian bombardment first hand and go inside the devastation of rebel-held Aleppo.
“The Overseas Press Club is one of the oldest and most respected collection of journalists in the business,” says Ward. “It's hugely exciting to win this award, and particularly for a story that I truly believe the world needed to see and hear.” FULL POST
CNN correspondent to receive Excellence in International Reporting Award
at Nov. 14 gala
CNN’s senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward will receive the Excellence in International Reporting Award from the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ), it was announced today by the ICFJ.
The ICFJ, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting quality journalism, selected Ward for her continued commitment to pushing the limits of war coverage in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Ukraine, Afghanistan and other conflict areas she’s reported from in the last dozen years. The prestigious award will be presented to Ward at ICFJ’s annual awards ceremony on November 14 in Washington, D.C. CNN’s Wolf Blitzer will emcee the gala event, which will also honor CBS anchor Charlie Rose and recipients of the Knight International Journalism Award.
“I am thrilled and humbled to accept this honor from such an exceptional institution as the ICFJ. For decades, it has been doing brave and invaluable work, giving journalists across the world the tools they need to tell their stories,” said Ward. FULL POST
As the civil war in Syria enters its sixth year, CNN releases exclusive reporting from senior international correspondent Clarissa Ward from behind rebel lines inside Syria.
Joined by CNN producer Salma Abdelaziz and Syria-based filmmaker Bilal Abdul Kareem, the CNN team spent almost a week on the ground in rebel-held areas of northern Syria to report on what life is like there. And less than 24 hours after arriving, the team witnessed an airstrike that left 11 dead.
“For too long, many of us have been relying on grainy YouTube video and Skype interviews to help us parse through what is happening on the ground in Syria,” Ward says. “Journalists have been able to get visas to visit regime controlled parts of the country, but it has been too long since Western journalists have entered rebel-held Syria. We wanted to see for ourselves what life is like under the bombs.”