Finalist, Rory Peck Award for NewsSponsored by Rory Peck Award for News

Mikel Konate (Spanish)

Filmed in July 2017, Central Mediterranean Sea

Rescue Mission in the Mediterranean Sea

Self-funded. Broadcast by Reuters

On July 25th 2017 Proactiva Open Arms, a Spanish NGO, faced a dramatic and complicated rescue mission in the Central Mediterranean Sea. Despite rough seas and three meter waves, the rescue team were called to what would be a more than ten hour mission, transferring the migrants from their rubber dinghy onto their ship. As space cleared it became evident that the floor was covered in bodies, later discovered to be five men and eight women, two of them pregnant. Three people were later reported as lost at sea. Mikel's footage includes the work of the rescue mission as well as interviews of the migrants recounting their harrowing journey from the Libyan coast.

Mikel Konate is a Spanish freelance videojournalist who has been involved in the media industry since 1999. He became a news cameraman in 2005 and began covering politics, social movements and breaking in 2008. Since 2014, his work as a videojournalist has focused on migration issues, humanitarian crisis and conflicts for media outlets including Reuters, The Associated Press, CNN and La Sexta among others. His footage has been used in several documentaries, particularly those regarding the migration crisis.

Judges Comments

“In one [single] rescue, Mikel successfully captures the narrative of what happens on journeys such as these. Although it is one snapshot in time, his images reveal so much about the situation right now in the Mediterranean Sea. It's a story that’s been told before but his footage stands out. It’s beautifully shot throughout; the wide-shots from the dingy and rescue boats, the close ups of a mother and her traumatised child. It’s an astonishing piece of journalism."