Arts and Culture

Filipino photojournalist wins big at White House Awards

Kristine Daguno-Bersamina - Philstar.com
Filipino photojournalist wins big at White House Awards
Over half a million Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh to date in this latest spate of violence; 20,000 alone crossed the borders on October 16, while another 100,000 wait on the border of Myanmar. The crisis that began as a counterattack by the Myanmar government against Rohingya militants who had attacked several police bases on August 25, turned into a full scale 'ethnic cleansing,' according to the UNHCR, as the army and local Buddhists firebombed, raped and murdered across Rakhine state, the predominantly Muslim western region of Myanmar.
WHNPA.org/Cheryl Diaz Meyer

MANILA, Philippines — A Manila-born photojournalist has triumphed over other contestants at the "Eyes of History" contests by The White House News Photographers Association (WHNPA).

In an historic win, Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Cheryl Diaz Meyer swept all the awards in the International News category.
Diaz Meyer's heart-tugging photos of the Rohingya refugees clinched her the First Place, Second Place, Third Place, and two Awards of Excellence for the said category, WHNPA said on Facebook.
WHNPA's "Eyes of History" is an annual event held since 1941 to celebrate its "members' creativity and competitive spirit in the still, video and multimedia disciplines. The group is composed of still and video photographers designated to cover the White House and other news events in Washington and beyond.
In a Twitter post, Diaz Meyer thanked WHNPA for the "immense" honor. 
"May this increase awareness for the plight of the Rohingya refugees, who Bangladesh wants to repatriate to Myanmar," she said.

The Rohingyas, a stateless Muslim minority in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, have long experience persecutions as they are believed to be illegal immigrants. 

Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh to escape murder and destruction of villages in the Western state of Rakhine. They are one of the most persecuted minorities in the world, according to Amnesty International. 

Born in Quezon City, Manila, Diaz Meyer is currently a freelance photographer, visual editor, videographer and producer, writer and public speaker based in Washington D.C. Her work has been published in top outlets worldwide such as the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, among others.

Diaz Meyer is best known for having won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography with colleague David Leeson for their coverage of the Iraq war. As a visual editor for McClatchy's Washington Bureau, their team was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting for their work on the Panama Papers last year.  


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