At least four US shells struck the Sheraton Hotel in Basra where the only checked-in guests are Al-Jazeera's correspondents. The Doha-based channel urged the US on Wednesday to ensure the safety of its correspondents, the only international journalists reporting from the besieged city.
“Journalists in this city are not part of this conflict,” said Abdel-Haq Saddah, one of our correspondents in Basra. “They are just covering what’s happening, that’s all,” he continued.
He said he could not know whether the attack was deliberate or an attack gone stray. The hotel was hit and damaged by at least four shells launched by US artillery. "Due to this latest development, Al-Jazeera Channel will be sending yet another letter to the Pentagon stressing the station's concern for the safety and security of its reporters in Iraq," stressed a statement issued by the channel.
"The news network has officially advised the Pentagon in Washington of all relevant details pertaining to its reporters covering the war on Iraq," it added.