John Martinkus, a veteran freelance journalist, was released unharmed late yesterday, a day after he was taken hostage by four Sunni militants and ex-Iraqi army officers.
Mr Martinkus was filming a report for SBS’s Dateline program and was preparing to leave Iraq when he was detained about 5pm AEST on Saturday outside a hotel popular with foreign correspondents.
According to the Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer:
"In this particular case, the journalist went out to investigate a story, I understand, and went to a part of Baghdad that he was advised not to go to, but he went there anyway."
John Martinkus responds to Downer by saying:
"Well, that’s ridiculous, because I was in the street outside the only hotel in Baghdad occupied by journalists which is directly across the road from the Australian Embassy. I was nowhere dangerous, I was doing nothing dangerous, I was not putting myself at risk. I was grabbed by insurgents, who are very well organised and know exactly what they’re doing."
Downer, he only has the one response theme.
Victim-blaming and victim-discrediting.
He gets everything he needs from a book called :
"101 ways to blame the victim, negate responsibility and wait for Australia’s majority to lose interest."