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A secretive border-crossing scene tops the World Press Photo Awards’ best images of 2015

Warren Richardson/World Press Photo
“Hope for a New Life,” August 28, 2015. Röszke, Hungary.
By Kate Groetzinger
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Stories of pain, joy, and transformation have flooded the news in the past 12 months, and with them, a overload of images: scenes of tragedy in Paris, of citizens confronting police violence in the US, and of seemingly endless migration flows at Europe’s borders.

It’s hard to find new ways to show large-scale and widely-reported events. But the winners of the 2016 World Press Photo Foundation contest have done it: From a black and white shot of a child passed across barbed wire at the Hungarian-Serbian border, to a seeming still-life of murder in Honduras, these arresting images shed new light on the past year’s stories.

Awards were given in several categories, to both single images and series. See the winners below:

Spot News, first prize for single photos: ”Hope for a New Life”

Warren Richardson/World Press Photo
“Hope for a New Life,” August 28, 2015. Röszke, Hungary. A man passes a baby through the fence at the Hungarian-Serbian border in Röszke, Hungary.

Spot News, second prize for single photos: “March Against Terrorism in Paris”

Corentin Fohlen/World Press Photo
“March Against Terrorism in Paris,” January 11, 2015. Paris, France. A demonstration that took place in Paris following the 2014 terror attack on satirical French newspaper Charlie Hebdo.

Spot News, third prize for single photos:

Niclas Hammarström/World Press Photo
“Gang-related Violence,” April 4, 2015. San Pedro Sula, Honduras. “Gang-related Violence” The body of a victim killed in gang-related violence in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. This was the fourth gang-related killing on the same street in one night.

General News, first prize for single photos: “IS Fighter Treated at Kurdish Hospital”

Mauricio Lima/The New York Times/World Press Photo
“IS Fighter Treated at Kurdish Hospital,” August 1, 2015. Hasaka, Syria. A doctor rubs ointment on the burns of Jacob, a 16-year-old Islamic State fighter, in front of a poster of Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, at a Y.P.G. hospital compound on the outskirts of Hasaka, Syria.

General News, second prize for single photos: “Under the Cover of Darkness”

Paul Hansen/Dagens Nyheter/World Photo Press
“Under the Cover of Darkness,” December 6, 2015. Lesbos, Greece. Refugees travel in darkness to avoid detection on Lesbos, an island in Greece.

General News, third prize for single photos: “Tianjin Explosion”

Chen Jie/World Photo Press
“Tianjin Explosion,” August 15, 2015. Tianjin, China. An aerial view of the destruction after the explosion in Tianjin, China.

General News, first prize for stories: “Reporting Europe’s Refugee Crisis”

Sergey Ponomarev/The New York Times/World Press Photo
“Reporting Europe’s Refugee Crisis,” November 16, 2015. Refugees arrive at the village of Skala on Lesbos, Greece.

Contemporary Issues, first prize for single photos: “Haze in China”

Tianjin Daily/Zhang Lei/World Press Photo Foundation
“Haze in China” Tianjin, China. December 10, 2015. Tianjin shrouded in industrial haze.

Contemporary Issues, second prize for single photos: ”The Forgotten Mountains of Sudan”

Adriane Ohanesian/World Press Photo
“The Forgotten Mountains of Sudan,” February 27, 2015. Darfur, Sudan. Adam Abdel, 7, who was severely burned after a bomb was dropped by a Sudanese government Antonov plane, sits next to his family home in Burgu, Central Darfur, Sudan.

Contemporary Issues, third prize for single photos: ”March Against Police Violence”

John J. Kim/Chicago Tribune/World Press Photo
“March Against Police Violence,” Chicago, Illinois, United States. November 25, 2015. Lamon Reccord stares down a police sergeant during a protest following the fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald by police in Chicago, Illinois.

Contemporary Issues, first prize for stories:“Talibes, Modern-day Slaves”

Mário Cruz/World Press Photo
“Talibes, Modern-day Slaves,” May 18, 2015. Thies, Senegal. Abdoulaye, 15, is a talibe imprisoned in a room with security bars to keep him from running away. Talibes are boys who live at Islamic schools known as Daaras in Senegal. Under the pretext of receiving a Quranic education, they are forced to beg in the streets while their religious guardians, or marabout, collect their daily earnings.

Daily Life, first prize for single photos: “China’s Coal Addiction”

Kevin Frayer/Getty Images/World Press Photo
“China’s Coal Addiction,” November 26, 2015. Shanxi, China. Chinese men pull a tricycle in a neighborhood next to a coal-fired power plant in Shanxi, China. 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 emissions.

Daily Life, second prize for single photos: “Amazon’s Munduruku Tribe”

Mauricio Lima/Al Jazeera America/World Press Photo
“Amazon’s Munduruku Tribe,” Itaituba, Brazil. February 10, 2015. Indigenous Munduruku children play in the Tapajos river in the tribal area of Sawre Muybu, Brazil. Brazil’s government plans to flood much of their land to build a $9.9 billion hydroelectric dam, the Sao Luiz do Tapajos, as part of a wider energy strategy across the Amazon rainforest.

Daily Life, third prize for single photos: “Into the Light”

Zohreh Saberi/Mehrnews Agency/World Press Photo
“Into the Light,” November 12, 2015. Babol, Mazandaran, Iran. Raheleh, who was born blind, puts her face to the sun behind a window in the morning.

Daily Life, first prize for stories: ”An Antarctic Advantage”

Daniel Berehulak/The New York Times/World Press Photo
“An Antarctic Advantage,” November 28, 2015. Fildes Bay, Antarctica. A Chilean scientist walks above the Russian Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity on the Bellingshausen Russian Antarctic base. Chilean, Chinese and Russian research teams in Antartica seek to explore commercial opportunities that will arise once the treaties protecting the continent for scientific purposes expire.

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