Did This Egyptian Photographer Film His Own Death by Sniper Fire?

A haunting new clip from Egypt's Monday massacre shows a photographer apparently being fired at before the camera goes dark.

A 26-year-old photographer for Egypt's Al-Horia Wa Al-Adala newspaper was among the 51 people killed when Egypt's armed forces opened fire on a large crowd of Muslim Brotherhood supporters who had gathered outside the army's Republican Guard officers' club on Monday morning.

Now, new footage from the shooting makes it seem as though Ahmed Samir Assem filmed his own death.

The clip above shows a soldier firing several times, turning apparently in Assem's direction, and firing again before the camera goes dark.

His bloodied camera and cell phone were found at the site, according to Britain's Telegraph newspaper, and Assem's colleagues later said that he was shot in the forehead by a sniper while filming.

The exact circumstances of Assem's death are hard to prove at the moment -- the army insists it was attacked by the protesters -- but the clip was reportedly shown at a press conference for the Muslim Brotherhood, which is currently clashing with the military and secularist groups. There's a good chance that unless it's proven to be staged, the clip will make for powerful PR fodder for the ousted group. It doesn't help matters that Assem's paper is the official mouthpiece of the Brotherhood's political wing. 

If it's circulated further, the chilling clip is likely to only worsen the stark divisions in Egypt that have emerged after last week's coup.

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Olga Khazan is a staff writer at The Atlantic, where she covers health.

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