SA still trying to get Hammerl's body
Johannesburg - The government is in negotiations with both the Libyan government and the country's rebels in an attempt to get slain photographer Anton Hammerl's remains returned to South Africa, The New Age reported on Wednesday.
"The Libyans are co-operating. In fact, we are trying to engage both sides, [Libyan leader Muammar] Gaddafi and the rebels trying to oust him, to try and find Hammerl's remains because he died in a disputed area almost at the border of the two warring sides," President Jacob Zuma told the daily newspaper.
Hammerl, who held dual South African and Austrian citizenship, was covering the conflict in Libya when he was shot by militia loyal to Gaddafi near the town of Brega.
According to American journalists Clare Gillis and James Foley and Spanish photographer Manu Brabo, Hammerl was left to die in the desert after the three were arrested.
He was shot on April 5, but news of his death arrived more than six weeks later, when the three journalists were released and told his wife they had witnessed him being shot.
South Africa accused the Libyan government of lying about Hammerl, after it assured officials he was safe even though it knew he had been killed.