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Anadolu Agency journalists win international photo awards

Onur Coban receives award for his photo titled 'A short-lived exodus from Turkey to Europe'

Kaan Bozdogan  | 02.03.2021 - Update : 02.03.2021
Anadolu Agency journalists win international photo awards


Two photojournalists from Turkey's leading news source Anadolu Agency received awards Monday in the Pictures of the Year International (POY) competition. 

Onur Coban received an award in the National/International News Picture Story category with his photo titled “A short-lived exodus from Turkey to Europe,” which depicts asylum seekers who want to go to Europe waiting at the Greek border in Turkey’s northwestern province of Edirne.

Noting that winning an award in the competition is important for both Anadolu Agency and himself, Coban said: “POY is an important and prestigious competition involving the world's leading photojournalists and media outlets.”

“The photos I took had another significance in terms of showing the violence inflicted by Greek border security forces on immigrants who wanted to go to Europe,” he said.

“I am happy that I was able to demonstrate the violence of Greece against immigrants and that I was deemed worthy of an award in this competition.”

Another Anadolu Agency photojournalist, Gokhan Balci, won third prize for his photo series titled “European Dream.”

Balci said he witnessed for around a month the struggle of irregular migrants who wanted to flee from the civil war in their country and go to Europe with the hope of a better life.

“Despite the harsh intervention of the Greek security forces, we tried to announce to the world the difficulties of thousands of stateless people who wanted to cross the border,” he said.

Anadolu Agency's Director-General Senol Kazanci also congratulated the award-winning photojournalists.

This year, Anadolu Agency's team received the finalist award in the category of Local Team Picture Story of the Year with the photo series “An Open Door to Europe.”

Photojournalists Sebnem Coskun, Elif Ozturk, Arif Hudaverdi Yaman, Gokhan Balci and Onur Coban’s 20-image photo series depicts a group of asylum seekers in Turkey’s northwestern border province of Edirne hoping to go to Europe.

Also, Sebnem Coskun received the second-place award in the Science and Natural History Singles category for her image of a diver surrounded by COVID-19 waste in the Mediterranean Sea.

Anadolu Agency received POY awards four times in past

Anadolu Agency photojournalists won the POY awards four times in previous years. The winners included Mosaab Elshamy from Egypt in 2014, Sebastian Castenada from Peru in 2015, Mustafa Hassona from Gaza, Palestine in 2016 and Elif Ozturk from the Turkish metropolis of Istanbul last year.

Among the members of this year’s jury were Cheriss May, J.B. Forbes, Shoun Hill, Marie D. De Jesus, Alex Wong, Preston Gannaway, Adrees Latif, Alysia Burton Steele, Melissa Melvin-Rodriguez, Deanne Fitzmaurice, Steph Chambers, Jose Carlos Fajardo, Elizabeth Cheng Krist, Alyssa Schukar, Katie Orlinsky, Ron Tarver, Samantha Appleton, Michael Robinson Chavez, Laylah Amatullah Barrayn, Carl-Pillipe Juste, Sue Morrow, Brian Palmer, Shaminder Dulai, Julie Winokur, Jasmine Goldband, Avi Gupta, Deb Pang Davis and Brett Roegiers.

The annual photo competition is a program of the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute at the Missouri School of Journalism in the US and has been awarding the best photojournalism since 1944. The awards are given in various categories following a review by an expert jury in the field of press photography every year.

Anadolu Agency sets itself apart from competition

Increasing its effectiveness in the international arena day by day, Anadolu Agency monitors breaking news on site.

Anadolu Agency sets itself apart in covering the latest developments by assigning photojournalists to important centers such as the US, Russia, France, Spain, Belgium, Greece, Germany, Palestine, Tunisia, Ethiopia, Colombia, Pakistan and Bosnia Herzegovina and by creating a free photojournalist network in other countries.

Anadolu Agency’s recent breakthroughs are followed by the domestic and foreign press and thanks to its cooperation agreements, especially "AFP Image Forum" and "Getty Images" with its signature “Anadolu Agency” as a leading brand, placed it in the memory of the press.

Photojournalists of Anadolu Agency, whose photographs are featured in the publications of leading press organizations such as Time, The Guardian, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Telegraph, Paris Match and Newsweek, also continue to win awards in international photo contests.

Anadolu Agency participated in the world's largest news photography festival, Visa Pour L'Image, held in Perpignan, France and the agency also organized the Istanbul Photo Awards.

Anadolu Agency, one of the leading photo producers in the world, publishes an average of 3,000 photos per day.

With its website, Anadolu Agency also opened its photography, video and multimedia content to the world from a single medium.

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