AFP reporter wins prestigious media prize

14th May 2011, Comments 0 comments

AFP reporter Emmanuel Duparcq was awarded the prestigious Albert Londres prize Saturday for his coverage of events in Pakistan and Afghanistan focusing on the activities of the Taliban.

Duparcq, 37, dedicated the prize to French television journalists Herve Ghesqiere and Stephane Taponier, who were kidnapped in Afghanistan in December 2009, as well as AFP's Pakistani and Afghan correspondents.

The Londres prize for an audiovisual production went to David Andre for a television film on people affected by the execution of a triple murderer in Oklahoma 10 years before.

The Albert Londres committee chose Tunis as the venue for the award of this year's prize, the most coveted in French-language journalism, in the wake of the ousting of president Zine el Abidine Ben Ali, whose regime exercised tight control on the media.

Agence France-Presse chief executive director Emmanuel Hoog hailed the award for Duparcq's "remarkable work" as "an honour ... which reflects on all the teams of AFP."

Duparcq joined AFP in 1999 after studies in journalism and history and has covered many of the world's hotspots.

He was posted to Afghanistan in 2005, then worked in Ivory Coast and Iraq before joining the Islamabad office in 2010.

A series of reports, produced independently of the Western forces deployed in Afghanistan, describe how the Taliban, who were almost written off in 2005, managed to revive their activities in two-thirds of Afghanistan and whole regions of Pakistan.

The 23 members of the Albert Londres jury selected Duparcq from among 50 candidates.

The annual prize was first awarded in 1933, the year after French journalist Albert Londres died in a fire aboard the steamship bringing him back from a mission to China.

In a career spanning nearly 20 years he covered major international and national events which contributed greatly to making journalism a respectable profession in French eyes.

© 2011 AFP

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