AFP journalist Bernard Estrade dies

18th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

AFP journalist Bernard Estrade, who covered wars, conflicts and revolutions around the world for over four decades, has died in Paris following a long illness. He was 65.

The broad-shouldered Estrade, who embodied a quirky mixture of an adventurer and the epitome of old France, joined AFP in 1970 and began his career as foreign correspondent in Beirut in 1973 -- two years before civil war erupted.

Throughout his time in the 1980s in Hanoi, Tehran and Nairobi he built a reputation for striving to go beyond official explanations of events.

He was one of the few Western journalists still in Baghdad when US cruise missiles began to pound the Iraqi capital Baghdad at the start of the 1990-1991 Gulf War.

As Moscow bureau chief, he witnessed the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, before heading to Jakarta for the fall of Suharto in 1998 and the subsequent secession of East Timor.

From 2002 to 2004 Estrade was AFP's United Nations correspondent in New York, the United States being his second home, as well as that of his wife Kate Hunt.

After a stint in AFP's editorial management in Paris from 2004 to 2009, Estrade became interim bureau chief in the southwestern city of Bordeaux in 2010, close to his hometown of Talence.

© 2011 AFP

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