Pictures of the Year International names best news, reportage photographs

Wednesday, February 15, 2012 | 11:10 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — After a week of judging, the first two divisions — reportage and news — of the 69th Pictures of the Year International judging have been decided. Among the winners are photographs of Libyan protesters and the struggles of an American veteran.

This untitled photo by Sam Dean received an award of excellence in the general news category of the news division.

"I had to be here and look and feel if there was anything here," says Gil Harrington, left, supported by her husband Dan Harrington while visiting the site where their daughter Morgan Harrington's remains were discovered January 2010. This photograph was publish Jan. 25, 2011 in The Roanoke Times.
"Quake Japan/Funeral" by Carlos Barria of Reuters won the Award of Excellence in the Impact 2011-Japan Earthquake category of the news division.

Family members of victims of the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami stand next to a coffin as more coffins arrive at a mass funeral in Kesennuma town, Miyagi prefecture March 26, 2011. The flimsy wood coffins were laid on two sturdy rails at a hastily prepared cemetery of mostly mud as the coastal city began burying its dead. Desperate municipalities such as Kesennuma have been digging mass graves, unthinkable in a nation where the deceased are almost always cremated and their ashes placed in stone family tombs near Buddhist temples.

"The Cult of 'The Dear Brother Leader'" by Moises Saman won second place in the issue reporting picture story - freelance/agency in the reportage division.

An armed female supporter of Colonel Qaddafi chants pro-regime slogans during a demonstration in favor of the Libyan leader on June 17, 2011in the Green Square of Tripoli, Libya. The photograph is seventh in the story.
"Hanging On" by Paula Bronstein of Getty Images won an award of excellence in the general news category of the news division.

A woman hangs onto a street sign in chest deep water along the flooded streets in Rangsit on the outskirts of Bangkok on October 24, 2011. Hundreds of factories closed in the central Thai provinces of Ayutthaya and Nonthaburi as the waters came closer, threatening Bangkok as well. Thailand is experiencing the worst flooding in 50 years with damages running as high as $6 billion.
"Welcome Home, The Story of Scott Ostrom" by Craig Walker won first place in issue reporting picture story - newspaper category for the reportage division. Walker was also won first place in the photographer of the year - newspaper category for the news division.

Scott Ostrom looks over his military service records and weeps after being told his apartment application had been turned down. The leasing manager said he couldn't allow Ostrom to move in because of an assault charge that turned up on his background check. Though Ostrom had his honorable discharge papers and his good-conduct medal, they meant nothing. "I'm not a criminal," Ostrom said. "You would think this would be worth something. It should be. It's not, though." This photograph was fifth in the series and was published Jan. 5 in The Denver Post.
"Too Young to Wed: The Secret World of Child Brides" by Stephanie Sinclair, a freelance photographer, won first place in the category of Issue Reporting Picture Story- Freelance/Agency in the reportage division.

Fifteen-year-old Sarita's face, covered in tears and sweat, is covered before she is sent to her new home with her groom. The previous day, she and her younger sister Maya, 8, were married to another set of siblings on the Hindu holy day of Akshaya Tritiya in North India.

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