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Fixers in Antakya, southern Turkey

it seems there is a bit of a racket going on here with folks capitalizing on the rush of journalists and photojournalists wanting to head across the border. be wary of who you are dealing with and if you can’t find someone you know who vouches for them, keep looking.

if you are on the hunt for someone, feel free to drop me a line and i will do my best to put you in touch.

by john d at 2012-06-02 14:36:01 UTC | Bookmark | | Report spam→

Many Syrian who speak some English just came to Hatay to make money of the situation and introducing themselves as Syrian activist. They work with real Syrian activists but at the same time asking for a lot of money taking foreign journalists illegally to Syria which other real activists don’t know about that they charge journalists that much money.

One person can not be smuggler and activist at the same time, advising people to do so is not correct because if the real activist find out that some activists asking for big money for taking people to Syria and they keep this money for themselves, they will get really angry with those smuggler-activists and this creates big problems for smuggler-activists plus put journalists life in danger too. I think that it is not correct advising people wrongly and putting them in danger which has happened recently.

So activist-smuggler either have to be honest and have to tell other activists how much money they take from journalists and give part of this money to other activists and to people in Syrian side who take care of journalists or have to stop to work as activists and become just independent smuggler and keep all the money for themselves. If they do one of that way it will be safe for them and for journalists.

One other thing is that Syrian refugees-activists have to be careful about is that they should not advertise themselves as fixers because they are working illegally in Turkey and they can face problems if it come out that they are working in Turkey. One Syrian can take Journalists illegally to Syria but for to work as a Fixer they need also to Speak Turkish. Anyone who speak Arabic and some English can not be a Fixer.

My advise to foreign journalists is that if they will go to Syria illegally from Hatay, they should talk about all the details with the people who take them into Syria and pay them at the end of the trip or at least pay half of the agreement at the end. They may end up with paying twice because some people say that they will take care of you in Syria and will be with you all the time and bring you back but once they are in Syria they leave journalists alone and people in Syria side want money for taking care of them.

Ragards

Memet

www.memetaksakal.com

by Memet Aksakal | 02 Jun 2012 22:06 (ed. Jun 3 2012) | Hatay Antakya, Turkey | | Report spam→
agreed Memet.

the one issue is what is ‘big’ money. while i agree that all must be in the same ballpark money wise, what has been the norm here is either too little or WAY too much. more often than not, no where near enough to cover anything should someone become injured, need supplies etc.

for the record, Memet can be trusted 100% folks and i encourage everyone to contact him if heading this way.

by john d | 03 Jun 2012 09:06 | hetay, Turkey | | Report spam→
and ALL the experienced journalists coming here know that arguing over $300 US to be taken across is shortchanging the people.

by john d | 03 Jun 2012 09:06 | hetay, Turkey | | Report spam→
that is why i say ‘experienced journalists’. i know there are others here and i am not about to make up any rules for who may or may not do this.

hope to see you soon Robert!

by john d | 03 Jun 2012 12:06 | hetay, Turkey | | Report spam→
www.memetaksakal.com

enough said

by john d | 04 Jun 2012 16:06 | hetay, Turkey | | Report spam→
I can fully recommend Memet as a fixer and translator, 100% honest and reliable, and good advice above… Henry Ridgwell, VOA

by Henry Ridgwell | 16 Sep 2013 11:09 | London, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
Anyone not “experienced” and without a reliable infrastructure inside (!) Syria should stay far away from this country these days anyway. Even experienced colleagues were/are already kidnapped. Enough said, too…

Ok, one more: I can recommend Memet as a fixer in Turkey!

John, still down there? Take care!

by randbild | 28 Sep 2013 18:09 | Bodo, Norway | | Report spam→
Newbiest on the ground or would-like war reporters should read this before:
http://www.ibtimes.com/syrian-conflict-assad-regime-free-syrian-army-al-qaeda-war-against-journalists-syria-1411864

by randbild | 29 Sep 2013 08:09 | Bodo, Norway | | Report spam→
I have not checked this site for long time. Thank you all for your words about me.
Memet

by Memet Aksakal | 12 Oct 2013 07:10 | Hatay Antakya, Turkey | | Report spam→

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Participants

john d, retired hooligan john d
retired hooligan
(whats a tagline?)
Istanbul , Turkey
Memet Aksakal, Journalist/Fixer Memet Aksakal
Journalist/Fixer
(Istanbul & Syrian border)
Hatay Antakya , Turkey
Henry Ridgwell, Video Journalist Henry Ridgwell
Video Journalist
[location unknown]
randbild, photographer randbild
photographer
Antakya , Turkey


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