TV Camerawoman Fired After Tripping Fleeing Migrants Says Sorry

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By F. Brinley Bruton

A TV camerawoman who was fired after being caught kicking and tripping migrants entering Hungary has apologized, saying that she was shocked by her own actions.

Petra Laszlo said she was "honestly really sorry" about the incident.

"The camera was in my hand, I did not see who was coming but the only thing that came into my mind was that I am under attack and I have to save myself," she wrote in a letter to Magyar Nemzet Online, one of Hungary's largest newspapers. "It is hard to make good decisions if someone is panicking."

Video of Laszlo kicking at least one migrant in a group trying to break through police lines and tripping a man carrying a small child while also running from police captured the world's attention.

"I am not a heartless nationalist racist camerawoman. I don’t think I deserve the political witch hunt, hate campaign and death threats," said Laszlo, who added that she was now the unemployed mother of a small child.

The camerawoman also said she did not know that one of the people she had kicked was a child until she saw video of the incident at a makeshift gathering point where police take migrants after they enter Hungary.

"I did not even realize it. The pictures of kicking her shocked me — just like it was not me," she added.

On Tuesday, Hungary's N1TV Internet channel announced Laszlo had been dismissed because she "behaved unacceptably."