Published: Sat, September 23, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Syrian-American journalist killed in Turkey

Syrian-American journalist killed in Turkey

Shaza Barakat said Halla was born in North Carolina and was related to Deah Barakat, his wife, Yusor Abu-Salha, and her sister, Razan Abu-Salha from Chapel Hill who were killed in 2015 by their neighbour who said he had "disdain for religion".

A Syrian opposition activist and her journalist daughter have been found murdered in their apartment in Istanbul, the Istanbul police department said on Friday.

The bodies of 60-year-old Arouba Barakat and 22-year-old Hala Barakat were discovered late Thursday, state-run Anadolu Agency reported, after friends anxious about the journalist who hadn't showed up for work, alerted police.

She was the cousin of Deah Barakat, who was one of three murder victims in what became to be known as the Chapel Hill shootings in the USA state of North Carolina in February 2015.

Her daughter was a journalist working for the opposition's Orient news. Homicide officers are investigating the deaths.

Friends and family believe they were assassinated by the Assad regime due to their human rights work in exposing atrocities committed by the Syrian president against his political opponents.

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In a Facebook post, her sister, Shaza Barakat, accused the Syrian government of being behind the murder. Friends alerted the police when Halla Barakat, 23, did not show up for her reporting job at the Syrian opposition website Orient Net, according to the Associated Press.

'Orouba wrote headlines for the front page, and she pursued criminals and exposed them.

Anadolu said the bodies were stabbed.

Hurriyet newspaper quoted an unnamed neighbor as saying the women were found with their throats slit. Her name and her daughter's name, Halla, are now in the front-page headlines, ' she said.

She was a member of the opposition national council and was a well-known as a supporter of the revolution and as a critic of opposition institutions.

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