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Missing Ukrainian photojournalist found dead near Kyiv

A Ukrainian photojournalist who went missing over two weeks ago while documenting the Russian invasion of Ukraine near the capital Kyiv has been found dead, according to Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office.

Photojournalist Maks Levin, 40, was a prominent freelancer who had covered the conflict in Ukraine for years. There were fears for his safety after he and a colleague disappeared in mid-March while covering Russian fighting in the Vyshhorod area near the front lines.

His body was found Friday in a village in Vyshhorod district north of Kyiv, according to the Institute of Mass Information, a Ukrainian civil society organization focused on press freedom. He leaves behind his wife, four sons and his parents.

Prosecutors said in a statement that, based on preliminary information, Mr Levin was shot dead with “small arms fire” by Russian forces and that a criminal investigation into his death is ongoing.

The colleague with whom Mr. Levin traveled, Oleksiy Chernyshov, was not found, according to the Institute for Mass Information.

Days before his disappearance, Mr Levin had posted a series of harrowing images on his Facebook page showing the mass evacuation of residents, many wrapped in white sheets to signal their civilian status.

“It’s like something out of a horror movie,” he wrote in a message accompanying the post.

As news of his death broke on Saturday, sadness was poured out from fellow journalists who had worked with Mr Levin. Many had spent the last two weeks soliciting updates on his whereabouts.

According to LB.ua, a Ukrainian news agency for which Mr. Levin worked for more than a decade, he was born in 1981 in the Kyiv region. He had been extensively documenting the conflict in Ukraine as of 2014, his work has been published in several Ukrainian and international news outlets, and he has also worked on photo projects with a number of humanitarian organizations.

Mr. Levin has worked with Reuters, the BBC and The Associated Press, among others.

“Every Ukrainian photographer dreams of taking a picture that will end the war,” Levin once declared, according to LB.ua.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/02/world/europe/ukraine-photojournalist-maks-levin-dead.html Missing Ukrainian photojournalist found dead near Kyiv

Brian Ashcraft

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