Press ceremony delivers awards to Egyptian photojournalists

Egypt's most distinguished photojournalists and were commemorated on Tuesday night in a photo-gallery at the fourth annual press photo awards ceremony. "Egypt Press Photo 2010–for the best journalistic photography" was held at the Sawi Cultural Center in Zamalek and organized by the Egyptian Photojournalists' Society, the Journalists' Syndicate, Al-Masry Al-Youm, and other sponsors. It featured a total of 280 photos submitted by 102 photojournalists.

Categories included: news, environment, picture package (photo set), tourism, and sports. Honor awards determined by the panel judges were also distributed among this year's winners. The events of 2010 depicted in these photographs include the parliamentary elections held on 28 November and the 5 December run-offs, along with the sectarian clashes in the Omraneya district of Giza on 24 November over the construction of a church.

Other photos captured the plight of underprivileged Egyptians as they queued-up for gas cylinders and water during this year's pervasive commodity shortages. Other crises captured in these photographs include January's torrential floods in the Sinai Peninsula that killed up to a dozen, destroyed at least 1000 homes, and left hundreds without adequate shelter due to housing neglect and poorly designed infrastructure.

Prior to the commencement of the awards ceremony, guests and the media flocked to featured photojournalists and examined works hung on white display boards. A number of peices by different photographers were given the similar titles. The awards ceremony began with a moment of silence in honor of a number of photojournalists who passed away in 2010.  

The award winners were announced as the following:


Third place in the news category went to (the late) Mohamed Hassan for his photo entitled "Muslim Brotherhood's Guide." The photo features the Brotherhood's new spiritual leader, Mohamed Badie, who was elected in January of this year, speaking from behind a podium lined with media microphones, while one of the guide's supporters wipes the perspiration off his brow with a napkin.

Mahmoud Khaled won second place for "Omraniya Church Incidents." Khaled captured a birdseye view of a Coptic man carrying a cross on his head while walking along a street strewn with rocks that were being hurled between police and Christian protesters.

First place went to Ahmed Ismail for his photo "Violence of the Elections." The photo captures the image of figures silhouetted in smoke in the darkness of night as they chant and gesticulate angrily. A fire on the street burns beside them.


The third prize in the environment category went to Amr Mustafa for his photo entitled "Fishing in Drainage Water." Second place went to Ahmed Ismail for his photo "Floods in Sinai," which captures people standing on mud-covered paths. Asmaa Waguih secured the category's first place prize with  "Falcon Training," a dynamic photo where the bird of prey flies over the desert with outstretched wings, resembling a kite as it is guided by its trainer.
Picture Package

Third place in this category went to Mohamed Amr for  "Omraniya Church Incidents." The set includes photos of Coptic protesters holding wooden crosses, hurling rocks at police cars and black-clad Central Security Forces, while the riot police troops hurl rocks back and fire teargas canisters.

Khaled Desouqi seized second place for his set entitled "Water Crisis" which features women, girls and young children holding buckets and pots while waiting their turn in long queues at local water taps.

First place went to Ahmad Hammad for "Cylinder Crisis." This photo-set shows men and women carrying empty gas cylinders and bickering among each other while waiting to exchange and purchase cylinders.


Third place in the tourism category went to Tarek al-Gabbas for his photo entitled "Temple of Luxor." The photo reveals a tourist emerging between shadows within the temple, a wall engraved with hieroglyphics behind him. Amr Abdallah received second place with  "Temple of Abu Sembel," a naturally colorful image of massive Ramses II statues taken just after sunset. Mohamed Abdel Wahab took first place with  "Luxor Temple" which features shadows and silhouetes of tourists around the massive head of pharaoh.


In the sports photography category, Ehab Eid won third place with "Equestrian." Full of motion, this photo captures a jockey while falling off his horse as it appears to collapse beneath him, its hooves kicking-up mud in the process. Second place went to Tarek Mustafa for "The Sport of Parkour," a dynamic photo of four traceurs in midair as they leap upwards, springing off walls. First place went to Khaled Desouqi for "Contact," a photo of an upturned footballers' cleats in close proximity to the grimacing face of an opposing team member, with the ball spinning away from both players.

Honor Awards

Honorary awards, as determined by the panel judges, were bestowed upon the following photojournalists: Heba Khalifa for "Electricity Blackout," a photo of a family sitting in the light of glowing candles during the nationwide wave of rolling blackouts that plagued the summer of 2010; Maher Iskandar for "Omraniya Church Incidents," a photo of a Coptic protester, viewed from behind the shattered glass of an automobile; Alaa Mohamed for "Suicide," a photo of a man dangling from the end of a rope tied to a bridge spanning the Nile; Mahmoud Abdel Ghani for "Demonstration," a birdseye view of plain-clothed police officer carrying away a protester by his arms and legs.

Ashraf Shabana won an honor award for his photo entitled "Floods in Sinai." The photo features a collapsed desert road with pickup trucks near the edge of crumbling concrete. Khaled al-Fiqqi for "Desert Tourism," a captivating photo of a jeep driving off-road through dunes and tire tracks towards protruding rocky mounds and smooth hills. Abdel Nasser al-Nouri also won an honor award for "Sand Therapy," a photo of an elderly man submerged in therapeutic sands. His head protrudes.

"Contact," a photo of football player in a McDonalds' jersey drop-kicking a ball while a member of the opposing team attempts to head it, delivered an honor award to Sayyed Abdel Qader. Ahmad Hayman won for "Sewage workers," a photo that features a laborer extending and straining his arms as he pulls his co-worker out of a steep sewer. Rania Gomaa's "Pottery," a photo of man working in a traditional workshop making clay pots while a dimly-lit brick furnace glows behind also won him an honor award in 2010's 4th annual press awards ceremony. 

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