JournalismPakistan.com March 18, 2014
PARIS: Agence France-Presse on Tuesday launched the 2014 edition of the Kate Webb Prize, which the global news agency awards to journalists in Asia for exceptional coverage done in dangerous or difficult conditions.
The competition, open to locally hired text, photo and video journalists — either freelance or those working for media companies in the region — carries a cash prize of 3,000 euros ($4,170).
Applications will be accepted until April 18. The winner will be announced in May and invited to an award ceremony in Asia.
The prize is named after Kate Webb, one of the finest correspondents to have worked for AFP, who died in 2007 at the age of 64.
She earned a reputation as a fearless reporter while covering wars and other historic events in Asia during a career spanning four decades.
"Journalists are facing increasing challenges in pursuit of their work. Attacks on freedom of the press are growing and journalists are regularly targeted in conflict situations," said AFP's Asia-Pacific director Gilles Campion.
"Coverage of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines exposed the physical and psychological challenges the media face in reporting natural disasters to the world," he said.
The Kate Webb Prize recognizes Asian journalists who work on the frontlines in tough conditions across the region.
"'With their in-depth knowledge, local reporters play a crucial role in covering Asia both for domestic and international media, and often at great personal risk," Campion said.
Born in New Zealand, Webb first made her name as a young woman covering the Vietnam war. She also worked in Afghanistan, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Thailand and the Middle East.
She was known for her kindness and compassion and became a mentor to younger Asian journalists.
The prize is administered by the AFP Foundation — a non-profit organization set up to promote press freedom through training journalists in developing countries — and by the Webb family.
It was first awarded in 2008, to Pakistani reporter Mushtaq Yusufzai for his coverage of the dangerous tribal lands bordering Afghanistan.
In 2009 it recognized the work of the Philippines Centre for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) and in 2011 was awarded to Dilnaz Boga, an Indian reporter and photographer, for her courageous investigative work in Indian-administered Kashmir.
Last year's recipient was Indonesian investigative journalist Stefanus Teguh Edi Pramono for his coverage of the conflict in Syria and his undercover investigation into Jakarta's dangerous and murky drug world.
This year's prize is open to local reporters, photographers and broadcast journalists in Asia, including camera crew, for work done between January 1 and December 31, 2013. Stringers and freelance journalists are welcome to submit entries.
Articles and broadcast material may be submitted in English or any Asian national language, provided that there is an accurate English translation.
Details of the prize are available on the Kate Webb Prize Facebook page. Applications should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline is 1600GMT on April 18. - AFP
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