The Awful Tale Behind the 2012 'Photo of the Year'

The photograph shows Palestinians grieving over dead children

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 18, 2013 4:16 PM CST

(Newser) – The winner of the World Press Photo's annual award tells a harrowing story. Paul Hansen's photograph shows Palestinian men grieving last year as they carry the corpses of two children killed in fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas, reports the Washington Post. Now, the Human Rights Watch reports that the family of the two children was unconnected to armed groups in Gaza and didn't even live in an area where militants were firing rockets at Israel.

According to the report, an Israeli strike killed 46-year-old Fouad Hijazi and his two children, 4-year-old Mohamed Hijazi and his 2-year-old sister, Suhaib Hijazi. "At 7:30 I saw the whole place turn red and suddenly the whole house collapsed on our heads," said another sibling who was seriously injured. Israel later dubbed the victims “non-involved” civilians. For one member of the World Press Photo jury, the photo of people carrying Mohamed and Suhaib was unforgettable: "The strength of the pictures lies in the way it contrasts the anger and sorrow of the adults with the innocence of the children. It’s a picture I will not forget."

This photo by Paul Hansen shows two-year-old Suhaib Hijazi and her three-year-old brother Muhammad who were killed when their house was destroyed by an Israeli missile strike.
This photo by Paul Hansen shows two-year-old Suhaib Hijazi and her three-year-old brother Muhammad who were killed when their house was destroyed by an Israeli missile strike.   (AP Photo/Paul Hansen, Dagens Nyheter)
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