Aris Messinis received the professional photography award for his work on the Battle of Sirte, Libya, which took place in October 2011. His photos were taken while National Transitional Council forces launched their final assault on the last pockets of Kadhafi loyalists, a few days before the dictator’s death. His images document the violence, but also the confusion and disorder that reigned during the final battle.
Aris Messinis, 35, has been chief photographer for AFP in Greece since 2006. He worked in Libya and Egypt during the “Arab Spring” and has won many prestigious awards such as Days Japan 2012, Fotoweek 2011, NPPA etc.
Works by Messinis were shown at this year’s Visa pour l'image alongside others by Louisa Gouliamaki and Angelos Tzortzinis - two other journalists based in the Athens AFP office - as part of an exhibition dedicated to violent protests against austerity measures imposed by the financial crisis.
Created in 1994 by the city of Bayeux, the Bayeux-Calvados Awards for War Correspondents reward journalists reporting on conflicts and their consequences for civilian populations, or news stories covering the defense of freedom and democracy.
A total of 54 reports were entered in the competition across different categories: radio, photo, print, TV, long-format TV, young reporter award and web journalism. The jury for 2012 was chaired by photographer Gilles Peress.