Mika Yamamoto's body flown back to Japan


This picture, taken in 1998, and released on Aug. 21, 2012, by the Yamamoto family at their home in Tsuru, Yamanashi Prefecture, shows Mika Yamamoto and her father Koji Yamamoto. Mika Yamamoto was killed in the north Syrian city of Aleppo.


Jiji Press

The body of Mika Yamamoto, the Japanese journalist killed in crossfire in the Syrian city of Aleppo earlier this week, was flown back to Japan on Saturday, according to the BBC.

The BBC noted that Yamamoto was the first foreign journalist to be killed in Aleppo since the government offensive against rebels started last month.

Kazutaka Sato, her colleague from Japan Press, said, "I am sorry to say that I cannot find words about the fact that I have her come back this way," according to Agence France Presse.

"I think she has really worked hard. You have really worked hard. That's what I want to tell her now," he added.

More on GlobalPost: Mika Yamamoto: Japanese journalist killed in Syria

According to the Associated Press, her coffin was brought to Japan by a Turkish Airlines plane, accompanied by Sato and Yamamoto's two sisters.

Yamamoto, along with Sato, was traveling with the Free Syrian Army in Aleppo on Monday when she was fatally wounded.

The Committee to Protect Journalists said that at least 16 journalists have been killed in Syria since November, while covering the conflict.

More on GlobalPost: Mika Yamamoto's final Syria footage released after her death (VIDEO)

The BBC noted that Austin Tice, an American journalist with McClatchy, as well as Bashar Fahmi, a Jordanian reporter, and Cuneyt Unal, a Turkish cameraman, have all been missing for a while.

"I want to come close to the truth about how she died," said Sato, according to AFP. "She was tender and had a strong sense of justice. She was straight and hot blooded."