Belgian cameraman Ahmed Bahaddou awarded internationally
Belgian cameraman Ahmed Bahaddou has won the Rory Peck Award London in the news category. Bahaddou received the award for the unique images he made of rebels on the frontline during the Libyan conflict.
The Rory Peck Award is presented to freelance cameramen who risk their lives to report on news. The award is named after the Irish cameraman Rory Peck, who was killed during the coup in Moscow in 1993.
Dramatic footage showing Libyan rebels defeating forces loyal to Gadhafi to retake the strategically important village of Al Majabira. From the surrounding hills we see a fierce gun battle before the rebels enter the village in triumph eight hours later. There, we see several soldiers loyal to Gaddafi who have been killed or captured. One appears to be a mercenary. Ahmed Bahaddou had been covering the story of Libyan refugees crossing into Tunisia when he decided to see for himself what was happening in the western mountain region. He meets a rebel commando leader who invites him to go on their mission to capture the village.
The judges praised "the extraordinary enterprise of this cameraman who essentially hitch-hiked his way with the rebels into the frontline." One said the footage was "everything you would want and more. It is incredibly composed shooting. The audio is particularly strong. You can almost feel the bullets whistling past you."
Ahmed Bahaddou was a staff cameraman for Reuters Television for 18 years. In that time he covered major news events around the world: in the Middle East (Iraq, Israel, West Bank, Lebanon); Asia (Indonesia, Banda Aceh); Africa (Rwanda, Congo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast). Since 2006 he has worked as a freelance cameraman editor for Associated Press in North Africa as well as CNN International, Al Jazeera English, CBS 60 Minutes in Afghanistan, BBC, ABC News, Channel 4 (in Iraq, the Middle east, the Gulf, Afghanistan and North Africa). Since April 2011 Ahmed has based himself in Tunisia in order to cover the Libyan crisis
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