This week on The Feed, Walkley nominated reporter Patrick Abboud gains unprecedented access to Thai military camp, Pak Chong, where 20 journalists from around the world are undergoing intensive training to garner the skills to survive while reporting from life-threatening environments and troubled hotspots around the globe.
This year, 92 journalists and media crew have been killed on the frontline. Most in Syria and Egypt, followed by Pakistan, Somalia, Brazil, Iraq, Turkey and Bangladesh. 96 aid workers have lost their lives while working to save others. Many of the participants partaking in this hostile environment training could be deployed to warzones or other high-risk situations at any time.
Patrick from The Feed joins these journalists over this seven day course as they’re trained in how to avoid abduction, dealing with death or injury on the job, a lesson in the dangers of explosives and weapons effects, how to dodge landmines, evasive driving to get through militia roadblocks and checkpoints, and how to cross risky borders safely.
“The reason I do this is to help people. I mean a lot of us, the guys that help deliver this course, we have a specific set of experiences and background and that past is able to contribute, to make people safer, and to probably avoid making some of the mistakes that we have,” explains trainer and military and security expert, Shaun Filer.
There were up to 35,000 kidnappings for ransom globally in 2012, 31% of those in Asia and the Pacific. Patrick meets Australian veteran foreign correspondent Peter Cave who knows these scenarios well. He has been working with Shaun, ex Australian military Ken, on teaching these courses to make them as ‘real life’ as possible.
Patrick Abboud’s feature length report will screen on The Feed on Thursday night.
The Feed serves up the latest news, technology and culture weeknights on SBS 2 at 7.30pm.
Join in the conversation at @TheFeedSBS2 Follow Patrick on twitter @PatrickAbboud