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Journalist Killed In East Timor Honoured

Journalist Killed In East Timor Honoured In Quill Awards

MELBOURNE, March 31 AAP - Dutch reporter Sander Thoenes, who was killed in East Timor last year, was honoured in the Melbourne Press Club's annual journalism awards tonight.

Quill Awards for Excellence were given to 23 journalists after the press club received a record 290 entries.

Mr Thoenes, who worked for the Financial Times of London, was posthumously awarded the Grant Hattam Award for media freedom.

The 30-year-old reporter was found shot dead in Dili on September 30, a day after he disappeared in the militia hotspot of Becora.

Witnesses said he was attacked by six gunmen wearing Indonesian army uniforms.

In a message to the awards ceremony, Sander's family said he had loved Indonesia and its people and had the courage to write about the corruption, nepotism and the mismanagement of the government.

"We would like to think this is a tribute to investigative journalism as well as to the man ... we can only be inspired by him to do the same," Sander's family said.

+++niuswire

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