Wednesday, November 2, 2016
Dutch journalist Klaas van Dijken has won the Best Report Award for his articles about Sudan. His publications “Darfur, war without end” and “And the city of Golo screamed”were published in 2015 in the Dutch newspaper Trouw. An expert jury and the audience, consisting of journalists, media professionals and policy makers, chose Van Dijken as winner on November 2 during Free Press Live- Stand up for journalists and justice. Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir won the 'Most Resilient Journalist Award and ‘Fisayo Soyombo from Nigeria won the Newcomer of the Year- Hans Verploeg Award.

The Best Report Award is the award for the best foreign report made with support of the Postcode Lottery Fund for Dutch journalists. The prize was conferred for the first time this year and was created by Free Press Unlimited and the Dutch Postcode Lottery. The fund enables journalists to make reports about human, nature and environment in developing countries and conflict areas. Van Dijken received the award from Boudewijn Poelmann, chairman of the Dutch Postcode Lottery. Connected to the prize is a money price of 10.000 euro.

Klaas van Dijken is freelance journalist, videographer and one of the founders of Butch & Sundance Media. He works as reporter in conflict areas and countries with repressive regimes, including Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Afghanistan and Eritrea. His work is published in newspapers, magazines, on websites and television worldwide. The other nominees were Minka Nijhuis and Lennart Hofman.

The Most Resilient Journalist Award was conferred to the Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir. He survived multiple attacks on his life, abductions, arrests and assaults. But in spite of this, he stays in Pakistan to keep working as a journalist. He says by leaving the country, he would discourage many young Pakistani journalists. The Most Resilient Journalist Award is awarded to a journalist or media professional who has shown exeptional courage and perseverance to bring the news. The jury, led by Philippe Remarque, also nominated the Colombian journalist Claudia Duque and Mohamed Al-Qadhi from Yemen. Lionel Veer, Dutch UNESCO Ambassador, conferred the award.

The Nigerian journalist 'Fisayo Soyombo received the Newcomer of the Year- Hans Verploeg Award from journalist and documentary filmmaker Fidan Ekiz. This award is a recognition for a new talented journalist that has shown to report with great expressivenes. The jury, led by Inge Brakman, praised Soyombo because of his brave undercover journalism and his renewing approach in a country where corruption in journalism seems to be the rule rather than the exception. The other nominees for the Newcomer of the Year- Hans Verploeg Award were Mehman Huseynov from Azerbeidjan and Tafadzwa Ufumeli from Zimbabwe.

2 November is the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists. On this day, Free Press Unlimited Unlimited, the Municipality of The Hague, the Ministery of Foreign Affairs, the Dutch Postcode Lottery and UNESCO organised the public event Free Press Live - Stand up for Journalists and Justice in The Hague for journalistst, media professionals and other interested attendants. Led by Twan Huys, journalists, legislators and policy makers discussed the increasing violence against journalists and the lack of persecution.