ANNOUNCEMENT ΟΝ GILLIAN WHITTAKER

Athens, 12th June 2017

It is with great sadness that the Foreign Press Association of Greece announces that Gillian Whittaker, a distinguished colleague and an active member of our association for more than 30 years, passed away on Sunday, June 11.

Gill began her career as a journalist for The Associated Press and then became a prominent shipping journalist for Lloyd’s List and TradeWinds, until her retirement last year.

Her family and friends have asked us to inform you that no funeral will take place.

Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

The F.P.A. Executive Council

ANNOUNCEMENT – JOHN RIGOS

Athens, 24th October 2016

The Foreign Press Association of Greece expresses its deepest condolences to the family of John Rigos, distinguished and beloved colleague, with great presence and sensibility, who died on Sunday, October 23rd. He was 91 years old.

He was born on 10th July 1925 in Athens. He started his career as a journalist, translator and editor for Acropolis and Athinaiki newspapers from 1950 until 1956.

For the years 1956 – 1967 he worked for Christian Science Monitor and from 1967 until his retirement he was the correspondent of Newsweek magazine and United Press International (UPI).

He was the President of the Executive Council of F.P.A. during the years: 1968-1970, 1973-1975, 1993-1994, and an Honorary member since his retirement.

The funeral will take place on Wednesday 26th October at 16.00 hrs at the Church of Assumption of Virgin Mary, Voula (opposite the hospital Asklipio Voulas).

The F.P.A. Executive Council

ANNOUNCEMENT – YANNIS BEHRAKIS

Athens, 13th October 2016

The Foreign Press Association of Greece would like to extend its congratulations to Yannis Behrakis, Reuters chief photographer for Greece and Cyprus, for winning 2 Bayeux Calvados Awards.

Yannis received the International Jury award as well as the Public΄s Choice Award.

The F.P.A. warmly congratulates Yannis.

The F.P.A. Executive Council

 

ANNOUNCEMENT – ARIS MESSINIS

Athens, 5th September 2016

The Foreign Press Association of Greece would like to extend its congratulations to Aris Messinis, photographer of the Agence France Presse (AFP) for winning the Visa d’ Or Prize (News category) at the Visa Pour L’ Image festival at Perpignan, France.

Aris Messinis, a longstanding member of the FPA, received the award for his work “War in Peace” on the influx of refugees to the Greek island of Lesvos in  2015.

The F.P.A. Executive Council

 

ANNOUNCEMENT – REUTERS PHOTOGRAPHERS

Athens, 19th April 2016

The Foreign Press Association of Greece is proud to announce that 3 foreign press correspondents have won the Pulitzer Prize in the category of Breaking News Photography for their work on the migrant/refugee crisis.

The photographs submitted by acclaimed photo reporters Yannis Behrakis, Alkis Konstantinidis and Alexandros Avramidis, all based in Greece, accounted for the bulk of the work of the Reuters photographers awarded the prize in New York last night.

The F.P.A. warmly congratulates the 3 correspondents on this great success.

The F.P.A. Executive Council

 

ANNOUNCEMENT – YANNIS BEHRAKIS

Athens, 21st December 2015

The board of the Foreign Press Association of Greece would like to congratulate our long-standing FPA member Yannis Behrakis for receiving The Guardian award for agency photographer of the year 2015.

Yannis Behrakis started working for Reuters in 1987. He has covered events ranging from wars in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo, Chechnya, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan, the first and second Gulf wars, and the Arab Spring in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia to the funeral of Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran and the Greek crisis.

Some of his previous awards:

Overseas Press Club of America photography award (1999)
1st prize in the General News Stories category, by the World Press Photo Foundation for his work on Kosovo (2000)
The «Prix de Public», Bayeux-Calvados Awards for war correspondents for war correspondents, for his pictures of the liberation of Kabul (2002)
2012 award of excellence in Best of Photojournalism (BOP) in General news stories

He has been a member of the FPA since 1987.

Read more:

Photojournalists assaulted while covering refugee crisis on Lesbos (International Press Institute)

Reported attempt by Greek police to prevent media coverage at FYROM border

VIENNA, Dec 14, 2015 – The International Press Institute (IPI) and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) today expressed solidarity with two foreign photojournalists physically assaulted on the Greek island of Lesbos while attempting to cover the ongoing refugee crisis.

According to local media reports, AFP photographer Aris Messinis and American freelancer Nicole Tung were ordered by a volunteer aid worker on Friday, Dec- 4 to stop photographing refugees on the beach near Eftalou. When Messinis and Tung protested, the volunteer instructed Greek lifeguards to “kick these people out”. Words were exchanged between Messinis and the lifeguards, one of whom eventually punched Messinis and with the help of colleagues threw him to the ground.

Tung told the Hellenic Photojournalists Association (EFE) that when she began to take pictures of the assault, the volunteer knocked her camera to the ground and pushed her down. She said she then saw one of the lifeguards place Messinis in a chokehold, which photographs published in Greek media corroborate. According to Tung, one of the lifeguards also threatened her and Messinis with a knife.

IPI recognises that some local commentators have apparently defended the actions of the volunteer and the lifeguards on the basis of claims that the photographers had invaded the refugees’ privacy. In her comments to EFE, which were later provided to IPI, Tung strongly denied such claims.

“A lot of insults were being heard, but Aris was also trying to explain that if a refugee, family, woman, man, etc. personally asking us to not take pictures, fine – we respect that”, she told EFE. “It is not up to the ‘authority’ of the lifeguards or other volunteers there to decide what to do with the press. Moreover, many of them have no concept of what the press is there for, and still more don’t understand that the reasons they’re even there is because they saw Aris’s pictures, and many other photographers images, in the first place.”

In a statement, the EFE expressed “deep concern about the emergence of self-claimed defenders of refugees, who consider they are entitled to control media coverage of the refugee crisis by imposing arbitrary restrictions on press freedom.” An EFE representative told IPI that the organisation felt compelled to speak out on behalf of Messinis and Tung although the two, as foreign correspondents, are not affiliated with EFE.

“Photojournalists have played an invaluable role in informing the Greek and European public debate about the refugee crisis, in many cases by visually capturing the depth and degree of human suffering involved,» IPI Director of Press Freedom Programmes Scott Griffen said. «Any attempt to prevent photojournalists from doing their jobs is therefore automatically a cause for concern.»

“In this case, there may be understandable tension between the press and those involved in humanitarian assistance. However, we unreservedly condemn the violence against Mr. Messinis and Ms. Tung, which should not be tolerated by the Greek authorities. Moreover, we remind that those involved in humanitarian assistance, however praiseworthy their efforts, are not entitled to decide the limits of press freedom.»

Separately, IPI noted with concern reported attempts by the Greek police to prevent media coverage of the removal of refugees from the border between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). According to EFE, two journalists and two photojournalists who had arrived at the border town of Idomeni last Thursday morning to cover the operation were arrested and taken to a local police station ostensibly in order to verify their identities, a practice known in Greek as prosagoges.

In a statement, EFE called the police’s action a “flagrant violation of freedom of the press” and rejected the police’s argument that the removal of the journalists had been necessary for the latter’s safety. The organisation also decried what it termed the “manipulation of public opinion”, referring to photographs taken by police of the border operation and circulated in the place of media coverage.

Read more:

ANNOUNCEMENT – DETENTION BY POLICE

Athens, 10th December 2015

The F.P.A. has been informed of the temporary detention by police of at least three journalists working for foreign media in the Idomeni area, in the early hours of Wednesday Dec. 9. The detention was carried out despite the journalists clearly identifying themselves to authorities, and despite the fact they were in an area where no access restrictions had been announced. They were later all released without charge.

The F.P.A. condemns and deplores the arbitrary detention of journalists that prevents them from carrying out their duties and will inform journalist associations globally of the incident as this is an inhibition of media freedom.

The F.P.A. Executive Council

ANNOUNCEMENT – ARIS MESSINIS

Athens, 4th December 2015

The F.P.A. has been informed that its member, AFP photographer Aris Messinis, and another two photographers were assaulted by members of a volunteer group while covering the refugee crisis on the island of Lesbos.

The F.P.A. condemns and deplores any use of violence to prevent journalists from carrying out their jobs, and awaits a full investigation of the incident.

The F.P.A. Executive Council

ANNOUNCEMENT – ANGELOS TZORTZINIS

Athens, 1st December 2015

The board of the Foreign Press Association of Greece would like to congratulate FPA member Angelos Tzortzinis for receiving Time magazine’s award for best news agency photographer in 2015 for his work on covering the refugee crisis in Greece.

Angelos has worked as a freelancer for the Agence France Presse since 2007 as well as for other media such as the New York Times, covering news in many parts of the Middle East but also in Ukraine. He has been a member of the FPA since 2012.

Read more: