While Ronaldinho was at the brigade to show solidarity and pay his respects for the victims of the August 4 explosion, dozens of fans flocked to the scene, taking pictures with him and asking for his autograph.
The retired Brazilian footballer was being welcomed by members of the Beirut Fire Brigade and some families of Beirut blast victims.
Also present at the scene was a group of cameramen and journalists covering the event. While at it, the group was attacked by a Lieutenant and other members of the brigade, in an attempt to push them back and make way for Ronaldinho to leave.
When the cameramen stepped back in to continue their coverage, they were assaulted again and insulted, and some of their cameras were smashed before they were kicked out of the area.
The assaulted cameramen are Houssam Shbaro, Mustafa Jamaleddine, Bilal Hussein, Fadel Itani, and Bilal Joueish, from Annahar, Nidaa Al-Watan, AP, Al-Modon, and Xinhua News, according to the Syndicate of Photographers. LBCI journalist Salah Fattouh was also attacked.
Stressing respect for the brigade’s sacrifices, the syndicate has denounced the attack in a statement, urging the Beirut Fire Brigade leadership and the concerned authorities to hold the perpetrators accountable for their actions.
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