2013 Pulitzer Prizes for Photography awarded for coverage of Syrian civil war


posted Tuesday, April 16, 2013 at 11:49 AM EST

The 2013 Pulitzer Prize winners for 2013 were announced today, and the two photography awards both went to coverage of the ongoing conflict in Syria, one to a group of photographers with an agency, the other to an individual. The two Pulitzer's for journalism photography are awarded for both Breaking News Photography and Feature Photography, the latter of which is awarded on the strength of a single image.

The Breaking News prize was awarded to:

  • Rodrigo Abd, Manu Brabo, Narciso Contreras, Khalil Hamra and Muhammed Muheisen of the Associated Press for their compelling coverage of the civil war in Syria, producing memorable images under extreme hazard.
Free Syrian Army fighters resting in a house on the outskirts of Aleppo. © Khalil Hamra, Associated Press
An apartment destroyed by tank shelling is seen in a building in the Karm al-Jabel neighborhood after several days of intense clashes between rebel fighters and the Syrian army in Aleppo, Syria, Oct. 28, 2012. © Narciso Contreras, Associated Press

Likewise, the Feature Photography award went to

  • Javier Manzano, a free-lance photographer, for his extraordinary picture, distributed by Agence France-Presse, of two Syrian rebel soldiers tensely guarding their position as beams of light stream through bullet holes in a nearby metal wall.
Two rebel soldiers in Syria guard their sniper's nest in the Karmel Jabl neighborhood of Aleppo as light streams through more than a dozen holes made by bullets and shrapnel in the tin wall behind them. The dust from more than one hundred days of shelling, bombing and firefights hung in the air. Karmel Jabl is strategically important because of its proximity to the main road that separates several of the main battlegrounds in the city. Both sides (the Free Syria Army and the regime) rely heavily on snipers in a cat and mouse game along Aleppo's frontlines. (Photo taken October 18, 2012). © AFP, Javier Manzano

Both awards are accompanied by a prize of $10,000, but given how prestigious the Pulitzer Prize is, the cash value is probably fairly far down the list of what makes this award important.

While both sets of this year's winners concerned the war in Syria, the other nominees in both sections were from a variety of other situations around the globe. The Feature Photography award finalists were:

  • Liz O. Baylen of the Los Angeles Times for her intimate essay, shot in shadowy black and white, documenting the shattered lives of people entangled in prescription drug abuse; and
  • Renee C. Byer of The Sacramento (CA) Bee for her heartwarming photographs of a grandfather raising three grandchildren after the violent death of his daughter and the loss of his wife to cancer.

And for the Breaking News award, those who made it to the final round were:

  • The Denver Post Staff for its skillful coverage of the mass shooting at a theater in Aurora, Colo., capturing the scope of the tragedy in a poignant portfolio of pictures; and
  • Tyler Hicks of The New York Times for his powerful pictures chronicling deadly destruction in Gaza following a retaliatory bombing by Israel.

You can see the finalist's photos and the other Pulitzer Prize winners here.