04 The Olivier Rebbot Award 2023

Best photographic news reporting from abroad in any medium

AWARD NAME: The Olivier Rebbot Award 2023
RECIPIENT: Mohammed Salem
HONORED WORK: “Gaza, ‘Hell on Earth’”

In the words of one of the photo judges, “Mohammed Salem’s images from his home, Gaza, quite simply broke my heart.” While his portfolio included scenes of the widespread destruction in Gaza, it is his empathetic, almost poetic, documentation of unimaginable loss, grief and terror that individuals felt that really moved the judges. The moments he captures make viewers feel the realities of what we read in the headlines and statistics everyday – an aunt clutching the shrouded body of her 7-yearold niece, a father in despair as he carries the lifeless body of his 3-year-old daughter. It is a testament to Salem’s strength and commitment that he captures such intimate moments while suffering his own grief and trauma. It is clear that Mohammed sees himself and his loved ones in every frame.


A missile fired from Israel flies towards its target as another explodes after striking a high-rise tower in Gaza City on Oct. 7, 2023. On the morning of Oct. 7,  Hamas gunmen stormed into southern Israel from Gaza and rampaged through communities, killing 1,200 people and taking 240 hostages back to Gaza, according to Israeli tallies. Israel responded with a devastating bombardment of Gaza, killing more than 22,000 people by year-end, according to Gaza health authorities. Photo: Mohammed Salem

A Palestinian watches in tears as residents search for casualties under the rubble of a building destroyed by Israeli strikes in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Oct. 17, 2023.  Photo: Mohammed Salem

Palestinians carry the body of a man killed in Israeli strikes on houses, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, at the Magazi Refugee Camp, in central Gaza Strip, Nov. 5, 2023. Palestinian news agency WAFA said 51 Palestinians, mostly women and children, were killed and scores wounded in an Israeli bombardment of Gaza's Maghazi camp. Israel says it is targeting Hamas, not civilians, and accuses the militants of using residents as human shields. Photo: Mohammed Salem

A man removes rubble from around a victim as people search for survivors in the aftermath of Israeli strikes, in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip on Nov. 1, 2023. Gaza is becoming a "graveyard for children", U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Nov. 6, 2023, amplifying demands for a ceasefire in the enclave. Photo: Mohammed Salem

A Palestinian man shouts as he evacuates an injured girl from the aftermath of Israeli strikes on houses, as the conflict between Israel and Hamas continues, in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Oct. 26, 2023. A child is killed on average every 10 minutes in the Gaza Strip, World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told the United Nations Security Council on Nov. 10, warning: "Nowhere and no one is safe." Photo: Mohammed Salem

In a final embrace Inas Abu Maamar, 36, cradles the shroud-wrapped body of her five-year-old niece, Saly, who died in Israeli strikes on Khan Younis, at the Nasser Hospital morgue before her funeral in southern Gaza, Oct. 17, 2023. Maamar, sobbing and tightly embracing Saly’s body said, "I lost my conscience when I saw the girl, I took her in my arms. The doctor asked me to let go... but I told them to leave her with me." Photo: Mohammed Salem

Palestinians search for victims at the site of an Israeli air strike on a house, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip Nov. 22, 2023. A mass burial was held on Wednesday in Khan Younis for dozens of Palestinians killed during the ongoing Israeli bombardment of Gaza. Photo: Mohammed Salem

Palestinians stand outside residential homes that were hit by Israeli strikes in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip on Nov. 7, 2023. Photo: Mohammed Salem

Palestinian children, wounded by Israeli strikes, are assisted at Nasser hospital in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Nov. 13, 2023. Aid agencies warn that a humanitarian disaster in Gaza is worsening by the hour with most of its 2.3 million people homeless and trapped in a tiny, embattled coastal enclave, with little food, water, medical care, fuel or secure shelter. Photo: Mohammed Salem

The father of three-year-old Alma Al Majayda, killed in Israeli strikes, mourns while carrying her body during her funeral, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip on Oct. 19, 2023. Photo: Mohammed Salem

Women mourn during the funeral of Palestinian nurse Haniyeh Qudih, who was killed in an Israeli strike, as the conflict between Israel and Hamas continues in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip on Oct. 27, 2023. Photo: Mohammed Salem

Day breaks as a survivor of an Israeli airstrike on southern Gaza, who was displaced from Gaza City and sought refuge with family in the city of Khan Younis, lays his head on the corpse of a female relative named Tamam which lies alongside other family members who were killed in the strike, at Nasser hospital, Khan Younis, Gaza October 24, 2023. The script on the bottom of the image reads “Ghasan Ahmed Youssef Murad.” Photo: Mohammed Salem


Citation for Excellence:
Daniel Berehulak
The New York Times
“Ukraine’s Stolen Children”