Worthy winners aplenty last night at the Amnesty International Media Awards held in Westminster. It was a night of reflecting on the role of the journalist in illuminating human rights abuses, in sometimes tough circumstances. Alan Johnston spoke movingly at the end of the ceremony and although another presenter was Ian Hislop, it wasn’t all a barrel of laughs. Boris wasn’t there before you ask.

I was on the judging panel for the new award fgor New Media. Although it was up against some flashy competition this was awarded to Sahar al-Haideri of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting for her piece “‘Honour killing’ sparks fears of new Iraqi conflict”. She was gunned down in Mosul after filing the story. I’ve been bursting to announce this since it was decided some weeks ago but now it is official and this courageous writer whose life was tragically curtailed is being recognised for her sterling work. A BBC report on this including an interview with her husband is here.

Clips of the BBC Scotland documentary From Congo to Motherwell (regional news winner) about re-adjustment following relocation of refugees to the other side of the globe did succeed in bringing a smile to people’s faces in a triumph-through-adversity type way. Of course the human rights agenda is a very live one. Pe-charge detention of 42 days opens up potential abuses under our very noses in these isles. The Olympics in China also highlight double standards of how sporting journalists from the west will get red carpet treatment compared to those indigenous writers who are telling the truth that get tortured. The full list of winners is last night’s here and an Amnesty cartoon on how China treats peacful protestors is here (not one for the kids really).

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