CPJ International Press Freedom Awards 2016

International Press Freedom Awards

CPJ's annual International Press Freedom Awards and benefit dinner honored courageous journalists from around the world on November 22, 2016, in New York City.

(Courtesy of CBS)

Profile videos and speeches by the 2016 awardees are available:

Malini Subramaniam: video profile and speech
Mahmoud Abou Zeid (Shawkan): video profile
Can Dündar: video profile and speech
Óscar Martínez: video profile and speech
Burton Benjamin Memorial Awardee Christiane Amanpour: speech

IPFA Honorees

(Facebook/Freedom for Shawkan) (Facebook/Freedom for Shawkan)

Mahmoud Abou Zeid (Shawkan) - Egypt

Mahmoud Abou Zeid, a freelance photographer who is also known as "Shawkan," has been in prison since his August 2013 arrest while covering the dispersal of a protest in Cairo.

Tweet #IFPA

#Egypt has become the second worst jailer of journalists worldwide. Shawkan, arrested in 2013 for taking photos, is one of them. #IPFA

(Courtesy Malini Subramaniam) (Courtesy Malini Subramaniam)

Malini Subramaniam - India

Malini Subramaniam, an Indian freelance journalist who reports on human rights abuses, fled her home state this year after being harassed and threatened.

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At least four journalists were behind bars in India, according to CPJ's 2015 census of jailed journalists: https://cpj.org/imprisoned/2015.php #IPFA

(AP/Dominique Soguel) (AP/Dominique Soguel)

Can Dündar - Turkey

Can Dündar, editor-in-chief of the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet, has been sentenced to five years and 10 months in prison on charges of revealing state secrets. He is appealing.

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President @RT_Erdogan: Drop all charges against @candundaradasi, and embrace press freedom as a fundamental right in #Turkey. #IPFA

(Courtesy El Faro) (Courtesy El Faro)

Óscar Martínez - El Salvador

Óscar Martínez, an investigative reporter for El Faro in El Salvador, has been threatened in connection with his coverage of gang violence and extrajudicial killings in the country.

Tweet #IFPA

El Salvador has highest murder rate in the world. @CronistaOscar tells the stories of those affected, exposing himself to grave risks #IPFA

Burton Benjamin Memorial Award Winner

The Burton Benjamin Memorial Award is given for extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom.

(Courtesy of CNN)

Christiane Amanpour

Christiane Amanpour, chief international correspondent and anchor at CNN, will receive the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award for extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom. Amanpour has consistently defended the rights of journalists all over the world.

The Committee to Protect Journalists will honor journalists from Egypt, India, Turkey, and El Salvador with its 2016 International Press Freedom Awards. The journalists have faced threats, legal action, and imprisonment. CPJ is also honoring Christiane Amanpour, chief international correspondent and anchor at CNN, with the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award.

The 2016 awardees are Egyptian freelance photographer Mahmoud Abou Zeid (Shawkan); Malini Subramaniam, an investigative journalist from India; Can Dündar, editor of Cumhuriyet in Turkey; and Óscar Martínez, an investigative journalist from El Salvador.

"These four brave journalists have risked their freedom--and their lives--to report to their societies and the global community about critical news events," said CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon. "CPJ is proud to honor these journalists who, in the face of repression and violence, continue to bring us vital news."

Christiane Amanpour, chief international correspondent and anchor at CNN, will receive the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award for extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom. "One of the most respected figures in journalism, Christiane Amanpour has reported from the world's major hot spots and has interviewed many world leaders. She has consistently used her own journalism and worked behind the scenes to defend the rights of journalists and uphold press freedom all over the world," said CPJ Chairman Sandra Mims Rowe. "We are proud to present her with the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award, which recognizes a lifetime of dedication to her colleagues in the field."

In 2015, Amanpour was named UNESCO's goodwill ambassador for freedom of expression and journalist safety. She is a senior adviser at CPJ and a former board member.

All of the winners will be honored at CPJ's annual award and benefit dinner. This year's chairman is Jeff Zucker, president of CNN Worldwide. The event will be held at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City, on November 22, 2016.

Note to editors: CPJ International Press Freedom Award winners are available for interviews, upon request, prior to the awards dinner on November 22, 2016. Media accreditation for coverage of the awards dinner will begin on November 1, 2016.

Media contact
Mehdi Rahmati, Communications Associate
[email protected]
Tel: +1 212-300-9032



Amal Khalifa Idris Habbani (Sudan), Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh (Vietnam), Luz Mely Reyes (Venezuela), Anastasiya Stanko (Ukraine)


Ahmed Abba (Cameroon), Patricia Mayorga (Mexico), Afrah Nasser (Yemen), Pravit Rojanaphruk (Thailand)


Mahmoud Abou Zeid, Shawkan (Egypt), Malini Subramaniam (India), Can Dündar (Turkey), Óscar Martínez (El Salvador)


Cándido Figueredo Ruíz (Paraguay), Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently (Syria), Zone 9 Bloggers (Ethiopia), Zulkiflee Anwar Ulhaque, “Zunar” (Malaysia)


Aung Zaw (Burma), Siamak Ghaderi (Iran), Mikhail Zygar (Russia), Ferial Haffajee (South Africa)


Janet Hinostroza (Ecuador), Bassem Youssef (Egypt), Nedim Şener (Turkey), Nguyen Van Hai (Vietnam)


Mauri König (Brazil), Dhondup Wangchen (China), Azimjon Askarov (Kyrgyzstan), Mae Azango (Liberia)


Mansoor al-Jamri (Bahrain), Natalya Radina (Belarus), Javier Valdez Cárdenas (Mexico), Umar Cheema (Pakistan)


Mohammad Davari (Iran), Nadira Isayeva (Russia), Dawit Kebede (Ethiopia), Laureano Márquez (Venezuela)


Mustafa Haji Abdinur (Somalia), Naziha Réjiba (Tunisia), Eynulla Fatullayev (Azerbijan), J.S. Tissainayagam (Sri Lanka)


Bilal Hussein (Iraq), Danish Karokhel and Farida Nekzad (Afghanistan), Andrew Mwenda (Uganda), Hector Maseda Gutiérrez (Cuba)


Dmitry Muratov (Russia), Mazhar Abbas (Pakistan), Adela Navarro Bello (Mexico), Gao Qinrong (China)


Jesús Abad Colorado (Colombia), Jamal Amer (Yemen), Madi Ceesay (The Gambia), Atwar Bahjat (Iraq)


Galima Bukharbaeva (Uzbekistan), Beatrice Mtetwa (Zimbabwe), Lúcio Flávio Pinto (Brazil), Shi Tao (China)


Svetlana Kalinkina (Belarus), Aung Pwint and Thaung Tun (Burma), Alexis Sinduhije (Burundi), Paul Klebnikov (United States)


Abdul Samay Hamed (Afghanistan), Aboubakr Jamai (Morocco), Musa Muradov (Russia), Manuel Vázquez Portal (Cuba)


Ignacio Gómez (Colombia), Tipu Sultan (Bangladesh), Irina Petrushova (Kazakhstan), Fesshaye Yohannes (Eritrea)


Jiang Weiping (China), Geoff Nyarota (Zimbabwe), Horacio Verbitsky (Argentina), Mazen Dana (West Bank)


Zeljko Kopanja (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Modeste Mutinga (DRC), Steven Gan (Malaysia), Mashallah Shamsolvaezin (Iran)


Jesús Joel Díaz Hernández (Cuba), Baton Haxhiu (Kosovo), Jugnu Mohsin and Najam Sethi (Pakistan), María Cristina Caballero (Colombia)


Grémah Boucar (Niger), Gustavo Gorriti (Panama), Pavel Sheremet (Belarus), Ruth Simon (Eritrea)


Viktor Ivancic (Croatia), Freedom Neruda (Ivory Coast), Christine Anyanwu (Nigeria). Ying Chan (United States) and Shieh Chung-Liang (Taiwan)


Ocak Isik Yurtçu (Turkey), Daoud Kuttab (Palestinian Authority), J. Jesus Blancornelas (Mexico), Yusuf Jameel (India)

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