The Newsroom has been told the NSW man killed in Tunisian terrorist attack on Wednesday morning was Javier Arturo Camelo from Sydney.
Abdul Attarwala, a close friend of the dual-national, has told The Newsroom Javier Camelo and his family were in Tunisa after attending Mr Camelo’s graduation in Madrid. It is believed his mother, Miriam de Camelo, was also killed in the attack.
Mr Attarwala said his friend was a “caring, kind hearted and awesom [sic] bloke”.
Condolences have flooded Mr Camelo’s Facebook page with friends saying he will be dearly missed.
His father, Jose Arturo Camelo a military general from Colombia, reportedly survived the attack.
Security forces killed two gunmen at the scene of the attack and are still searching for accomplices.
The gunmen reportedly began firing at tourists getting off buses in front of the National Bardo Museum near Tunisia’s parliament building, causing many to fear for their lives.
Security forces filled the area surrounding the museum soon after the attack and, according to a tweet by parliament member Sayida Ounissi, the parliament building was evacuated.
Private radio station Radio Mosaïque said three men dressed in military-style clothing may have taken hostages inside the museum.
A statement from Prime Minister, Habib Essid, said two Tunisians including a police officer, a foreign national and a man from New South Wales were among the victims.
Tunisia has struggled with violence by Islamic extremists in recent years including some linked to the Islamic State group. It’s security forces have also been targeted by extremists linked to al-Qaida’s North African arm.
In recent years, the country has seen violence largely focused on security forces, not foreigners or tourist sites.
The attack is a blow to Tunisia’s efforts to revive its tourism industry.
Amnesty International is calling on the authorities to ensure that all those involved in planning and carrying out this attack are apprehended and brought to justice.
“This deadly attack, which in itself is utterly deplorable, must not be allowed to derail what many regard as the region’s most successful transition from authoritarianism to the rule of law and respect for human rights,” said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Programme Director at Amnesty International.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack. – Mohammad Rassawala, Andrew Leeson, Lily Mayers and Vishnavi Kulenthirarasa
Top photo from Javier Camelo’s LinkedIn.