Dramatic news images

A grainy black and white image of a migrant passing a baby under a barbed wire fence from Serbia into Hungary has taken first prize in the 2015 World Press Photo awards.

Taken at night on 28 August last year by Australian photographer Warren Richardson, this man and child were part of the movement of people seeking to cross into Hungary before a secure fence along the border was completed.

Warren Richardson, Australia, 2015, Hope for a New LifeImage copyright
Warren Richardson

“Early on we looked at this photo and we knew it was an important one,” says Francis Kohn, chair of the jury.

“It had such power because of its simplicity, especially the symbolism of the barbed wire,” Mr Kohn, who is also photo director of Agence France-Presse, added.

“We thought it had almost everything in there to give a strong visual of what’s happening with the refugees. I think it’s a very classical photo, and at the same time it’s timeless.”

The World Press Photo awards have been running since 1955. This year, 41 photographers from 21 nationalities were awarded in eight categories.

Sergey Ponomarev, for The New York Times, won first prize in the General News (Stories) category for “Reporting Europe’s Refugee Crisis” which included this image of a man in Tovarnik, Hungary, attempting to board a train headed to Zagreb, Croatia.

Sergey Ponomarev, Russia, 2015, for The New York TimesImage copyright
Sergey Ponomarev for The New York Times

Mauricio Lima, also for The New York Times, won the General News (Singles) prize for this next image.

A doctor rubs ointment on the burns of a 16-year-old fighter for the so-called Islamic State, at a Kurdish hospital compound on the outskirts of Hasaka, Syria on 1 August, 2015.

Mauricio Lima, Brazil, 2015 for The New York Times, IS Fighter Treated atImage copyright
Mauricio Lima for The New York Times

Corentin Fohlen took second place in the Spot News (Singles) prize for his January 2015 photo of an anti-terrorism demonstration in Paris, following the series of attacks which began at the offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Corentin Fohlen, France, 2015, March Against Terrorism in ParisImage copyright
Corentin Fohlen

A photo of boy being taken from rubble after airstrikes in the city of Douma, Syria was taken by Sameer Al-Doumy.

From his series “Aftermath of Airstrikes in Syria”, it took the top prize for Spot News (Stories).

Sameer Al-Doumy, Syria, 2015, Agence France-PresseImage copyright
Sameer Al-Doumy / AFP

In provincial Russia, more than 600km to the east of Moscow, Evgeny Solovyov, head coach of amateur hockey team HC Vetluga, prepares the stadium for a match.

The image is one of a series by Vladimir Pesnya, which came top in the Sports (Stories) category.

Vladimir Pesnya, Russia, 2015, SputnikImage copyright
Vladimir Pesnya / Sputnik

Christian Bobst from Switzerland came second in the same category for “The Gris-gris Wrestlers of Senegal”.

These events, which take place in the evenings when temperatures drop, have a festival atmosphere, and include dance performances, music, and wrestling shows.

Christian Bobst - The Gris-gris Wrestlers of SenegalImage copyright
Christian Bobst

The northern Chinese city of Tianjin shrouded in haze was captured by Zhang Lei. It was the Contemporary Issues (Singles) winner.

Zhang Lei, China, 2015, Tianjin Daily, Haze in ChinaImage copyright
Zhang Lei / Tianjin Daily

Second prize in the same category went to Adriane Ohanesian for “The Forgotten Mountains of Sudan”.

Seven-year-old Adam Abdel was severely burned after a bomb was dropped next to his family home in Burgu, Central Darfur, Sudan.

Adriane Ohanesian, USA, 2015, The Forgotten Mountains of SudanImage copyright
Adriane Ohanesian

A series by Mario Cruz portraying the plight of boys known as Talibes who live at Islamic schools in Senegal, won first prize for Contemporary Issues (Stories).

Mario Cruz, Portugal, 2015. Runaway talibes stand on the bank of Senegal river, Saint Louis, Senegal, 20 May 2015Image copyright
Mario Cruz

In Shanxi, China, men pull a tricycle in a neighbourhood close to a coal-fired power plant. The photo taken by Kevin Frayer won first prize in Daily Life (Singles).

“A history of heavy dependence on burning coal for energy has made China the source of nearly a third of the world’s total carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions – the toxic pollutants widely cited by scientists and environmentalists as the primary cause of global warming,” says Frayer.

Kevin Frayer, Canada, 2015, Getty Images, China's Coal AddictionImage copyright
Kevin Frayer / Getty Images

On Sydney’s Bondi Beach in Australia a massive “cloud tsunami” looms in Rohan Kelly’s photo, winner of the Nature (Singles) category.

Rohan Kelly, Australia, 2015, Daily Telegraph, Storm Front on Bondi BeachImage copyright
Rohan Kelly / Daily Telegraph

First prize for Nature (Stories) went to Tim Laman for his work “Tough Times for Orangutans”.

This image shows a Bornean orangutan climbing over 30 metres up a tree in the rain forest of Gunung Palung National Park, West Kalimantan, Indonesia.

Laman documents the threat to the species from fire, illegal animal trade and loss of habitat due to deforestation.

Tim Laman, USA, 2015Image copyright
Tim Laman

The aftermath of the 25 April earthquake in Nepal was the subject of Daniel Berehulak’s series for The New York Times.

Here, villagers shield their faces from the downwash of a helicopter. Taken on 9 May 2015, the image was placed third for General News Stories.

Daniel Berehulak for the New York TimesImage copyright
Daniel Berehulak for the New York Times

The winners and finalists will feature in a touring exhibition which opens in Amsterdam on 16 April 2016.

You can view the full set of prize-winning images at www.worldpressphoto.org.

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