Tehran protest image wins top news photo award

AMSTERDAM: An image of women shouting from the rooftops in protest at Iran’s presidential election last June won the top World Press Photo prize for news photography on Friday.

Described by judges as “the beginning of something, the beginning of a huge story”, the photo is part of a series that Italian Pietro Masturzo shot on Tehran’s rooftops at night, when people were shouting their dissent over the election results as protests raged on the streets during the day.

“The difficulty in photographing conflict situations is one of portraying the parallel lives involved, of people going on with their lives,” said Guy Tillim, one of 19 judges.

“This picture has made a very good attempt at marrying these two elements, in giving the conflict a context – and that is a holy grail of photography.”

Conflict was a major theme among the winning news photos again this year, with most coming from places such as Afghanistan, Iran, Gaza, the West Bank and Somalia.

The top prize in the spot news category went to Adam Ferguson of the VII Mentor Program for the New York Times with a scene of a suicide bombing in Afghanistan.

Reuters photographer Mohammed Salem won second prize in the category for a picture of a glowing plume of smoke in Gaza after an Israeli offensive. The Associated Press’s Julie Jacobson came third for a picture of a wounded soldier in Afghanistan.

The Amsterdam-based World Press Photo organisation said more than 101,960 images were submitted by 5,847 photographers from 128 countries.

Winner Masturzo will receive his award of 10,000 euros ($13,700) at an awards ceremony in Amsterdam in May.


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