PRESS RELEASE

KURT SCHORK MEMORIAL AWARDS FOR 2007 HONOUR
MURDERED IRAQI WOMAN JOURNALIST AND GERMAN INVESTIGATION INTO ILLEGAL MIGRATION

London, October 11 2007 - For the second year in a row, the Kurt Schork 
Memorial Awards have honoured a journalist killed in Iraq because of critical 
reporting. 

Sahar Al-Haideri, 44 - a mother of four and contributor to the Institute for 
War and Peace Reporting, IWPR, as well as Iraqi media - was gunned down in June 
in Mosul after receiving death threats for a series of campaigning stories 
highlighting the influence of religious extremists, especially in curtailing 
the rights of women. Al-Haideri has received the 2007 Schork award for local 
journalists.

"Al-Haideri's investigation of the 'honour killing' amongst Yezidis was 
exceptional," said Lindsey Hilsum, international editor and China correspondent 
for the UK's Channel 4 News and a member of the judges panel. "There is a 
passion to these stories, and I read them before the background notes, so did 
not realise she had been subsequently murdered. It is unbelievably upsetting."

The 2006 Schork Awards recognised US journalist Steven Vincent, who was killed 
in Basra.

In the international category, Mario Kaiser, a contributor to Der Spiegel, won 
for his reporting on a young Mexican women's journey as an illegal immigrant to 
New York. Kaiser researched the article by putting himself in the hands of a 
smuggler in order to understand the hardships of illegal migrants.

"This is a perennial story, brilliantly retold and made new," said the judges 
panel, which also included Raymond Bonner of The New York Times, writer and 
commentator Mona Eltahawy, Brian Groom of The Financial Times and Christina 
Lamb of The Sunday Times. "His resourcefulness and courage in committing 
himself to the hands of a coyote [smuggler] were exceptional."

The Schork Awards, administered by the Kurt Schork Memorial Fund and the 
media-development group IWPR, uniquely honour excellence and bravery in 
freelance reporting from areas of crisis and transition. Established in 2001, 
they celebrate the life and work of Kurt Schork, the former freelance reporter 
who was killed six years ago in Sierra Leone on assignment for Reuters.

The awards, and a prize of $5,000 each, will be presented to Kaiser and 
al-Haideri's husband on November 14, at a ceremony at the Frontline Club in 
London hosted by CNN chief international correspondent and Schork Fund advisory 
board member Christiane Amanpour. The evening will include a debate on the 
challenges of reporting from the world's most politically problematic and 
isolated countries - including Burma, North Korea, China and Iran.

For more information about the awards or to attend the event, contact Alan 
Davis [EMAIL PROTECTED]

Further information about the Kurt Schork Memorial Fund can be found at 
www.ksmfund.org  
 
IWPR has established the Sahar Journalists' Assistance Fund to support IWPR 
journalist participants in its training and reporting programmes around the 
world; see www.iwpr.net/sahar.html 

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