Filipino American freelance photojournalist Cheryl Diaz Meyer celebrated an historic victory this week, sweeping the international category in the Eyes of History contest presented by the White House News Photographers Association (WHNPA)
The Eyes of History contest is “held annually to select the best in visual journalism across still, video, and multimedia disciplines.”
Meyer’s photos took all awards: First place, Second place, Third place, and two Awards of Excellence of WHNPA’s International News category.
Her photographs depicting Rohingya refugees were what won her these prestigious awards, reported Town & Country. “Anwara Nurhassan takes a boat from Chalpuridip, Bangladesh, as she continues her journey to refugee camps further inland on Oct. 3, 2017,” read the photo caption below the stunning black-and-white image which won Meyer her First Place award.
According to The Philippine Star, the Rohingyas depicted in Meyer’s winning photographs are a stateless Muslim minority in Myanmar. They have escaped to Bangladesh to avoid murder and destruction of villages in the Western state of Rakhine. Amnesty International has described the Rohingyas as the most persecuted minorities in the world.
“Thank you to the judges of the White House News Photographers Association for this immense honor. I’ve never been awarded an entire category in any competition, and I’m deeply moved,” Meyer wrote on LinkedIn. “I hope this increases awareness for the plight of the Rohingya refugees who Bangladesh wants to repatriate to Myanmar.”
Along with this achievement, Meyer has also won two Pulitzer Prizes, one in 2004 for Breaking News Photography and another in 2006 for Breaking News Photography on Hurricane Katrina, the Manila Times reported. Also notable are her coverage of the Iraq War in 2003 and of women adversity around the globe.
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