Petition to Release South African Photographer and Tragic Loss in Libya

The photojournalism world suffered a tragic loss with the death of Tim Hetherington and Chris Hondros in Libya. This highlights further the dangerous and hostile working conditions for journalists in Libya as the Gaddafi government seems to be targeting the press. South African photographer Anton Hammerl has gone missing in Libya. His last photographs were uploaded from the Benghazi and Brega areas.
Sign the petition to release Anton Hammerl
Tim Hetherington won the World Press Photo of the Year award in 2008 with his extraordinary picture of an exhausted soldier in Afghanistan. He was a wonderful ambassador for photojournalism and was involved with World Press Photo in running training of photojournalists in Africa having lived in both Liberia and Sierra Leone during some of the most tumultuous times those nations faced. I will be in Amsterdam for the World Press Photo Awards in Amsterdam next week and was hoping to meet him, having heard so much about him from WPPh staff in the education department who worked with him and spoke highly of him. He will be sorely missed!

Above: Liberia, June 2003. © Tim Hetherington

As Amy Yenkin says in her tribute to him: “Tim’s photographs showed us something unexpected. They deepened our understanding by revealing personal experiences of struggle and salvation. One image from Liberia in particular stands out in my mind: two lovers in conversation before heading off to the front lines in their battle against the ruthless dictatorship of Charles Taylor (above). In this intimate moment, we can feel this couple’s emotions as they head off to fight.”
Read Amy Yenkin’s tribute to Tim on the Open Society Foundation’s blog
Read the World Press Photo tribute to Tim
View the tributes to Tim on a site set up by his family
Chris Hondros was a photographer for Getty Images based in New York city. He was no stranger to Africa covering conflicts in Angola, Sierra Leone and Liberia and won multiple World Press Photo awards as well as being nominated as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.
Tim Hetherington on Liberia
PBS Newshour interview with Tim Hetherington on his work in Afghanistan
The Sal Guinta Story a film by Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington

8 responses to “Petition to Release South African Photographer and Tragic Loss in Libya

  1. Please submit my name to this petition. We urge those who are holding this journalist to release him immediately.

  2. I join my voice to others for request to release Anton Hammerl, a South Africa photographer currently missing after get in Libya on special assignment.
    Journalists are not players in the events that happen. They just do their work of watch dogs to tell the truth whether the news is good or bad.

  3. I join the voices of the others for the request to release media people and colleagues missing in Libya and in other parts of the globe, either in internationally visible conflict as well as in a more locally and surrogate ones.

  4. Please add my name to the voices that are calling for the rease of Anton Hammerl. Photographers are there just to make us cnnect with the tragedies. They are not on anybodies side.

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