Finalist, Sony Impact Award for Current AffairsSponsored by Sony Impact Award for Current Affairs

Mohammed Al-Mekhlafi (Yemeni)

Filmed in July - Aug 2017, Yemen

Conflict and Cholera: Yemen's Catastrophe

Commissioned and broadcast by BBC Arabic/BBC Our World

This film, shot in the the summer of 2017, provides a unique insight into what the UN has described as the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, with seven million Yemeni people facing famine and hundreds of thousands infected with cholera. While the scale of the tragedy has been reported by international media, Mohammed remains one of very few cameramen to have successfully reported from both rebel held and government controlled areas in Yemen. Travelling with reporter Nawal Al Maghafi from the country's government-held west coast region to the Houthi-held north-west - a hazardous 1000 km journey - Mohammed documents the catastrophe unfolding in his country. At a time when the Saudi coalition had blocked foreign journalists from entering the country, he made sure the images of suffering continued to reach audiences around the world. 

BIOGRAPHY: 
Mohammed is a Yemeni cameraman based in Sana’a. He has been working with the BBC on freelance shoots since 2012. When the conflict in Yemen began in 2015, Mohammed worked tirelessly to film the catastrophic situation unfolding in his home country for the BBC, Human Rights Watch and others. He has since travelled across the country - at incredible risk to himself and his family - from places under rebel Houthi control to areas held by the government to cover all sides of the story.

Judges Comments

“What stood out was the incredible access the team got across Yemen - across both sides of this very difficult conflict - and the journalism they did to get to the heart, the source, of the cholera epidemic. The fact that Mohammed was able to document what was happening in his country and to bring that out of Yemen is vitally important. The pictures that he filmed, especially of the children that had contracted cholera, were so powerful. It's a story of urgency that people need to know about."