Nov 11, 2019

Founder of Syria's White Helmet rescue group found dead in Turkey

Reporters outside the home of James Le Mesurier

Reporters outside the home of James Le Mesurier in Turkey. Photo: Burak Kara/Getty Images

James Le Mesurier, a former British army officer and CEO of Mayday Rescue group, was found dead outside of his home in Istanbul on Monday, reports Al Jazeera.

Why it matters: Le Mesurier helped start the White Helmets, a volunteer search and rescue group in Syria credited with saving the lives of thousands, per Al Jazeera. Turkish officials are investigating whether he committed suicide.

What they're saying: The White Helmet's responded to the news of Le Mesurier's death on Twitter.

We have learned with shock and sadness the news of the death of @lemesurierjames, founder and director of the humanitarian organization @MaydayRescue, early on Monday at his home in Tophane Istanbul, Turkey. Mayday is one of the institutions supporting the White Helmets."
"The Syrian Civil Defense family extends its deepest condolences to the James family, and we express our deepest sorrow and solidarity with his family. As we also must commend his humanitarian efforts which Syrians will always remember."
ā€” The White Helmets

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