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Flashback Friday: 30 Years of Reuters Photography

Reuters multi-award winning photographers are celebrated here in a retrospective on the 30th anniversary of the service's launch. Reuters photographers have captured dramatic images illustrating the human tragedy of natural disaster and war as well as the fallout of economic events across the continents. They have brought their lenses to bear on sport, culture and show business as well as world political and economic leaders - creating iconic images recognized around the world.
--Reuters

ABOVE: U.S. Marine Corp Assaultman Kirk Dalrymple watches as a statue of Iraq's President Saddam Hussein falls in central Baghdad on April 9, 2003.

Eds. Note: Many of the images that follow contain graphic depictions of death and violence.

Goran Tomasevic / X90012

Frantic Kurdish refugees struggle for a loaf of bread during a humanitarian aid distribution at the Iraqi-Turkish border on April 5, 1992.

Photographer's commentary: At the end of the first Iraq war about 1.5 million Kurds were fleeing in panic trying to escape from forces loyal to Saddam Hussein. About 600,000 of them fled to Turkey but half of them were stranded in the mountains at the Iraqi-Turkish border.

I hitchhiked a ride on a tractor pulling a cart full of bread to feed the stranded Kurdish refugees atop the snow capped mountains at the border.

As the tractor made its way slowly through the dangerous dirt road, it was attacked by hundreds of hungry refugees who fought against each other and the aid workers. The men I was riding with tried in vain to stop the refugees from taking the bread but the refugees were absolutely desperate and the aid workers gave up.

Yannis Behrakis / X00025

An injured soccer fan is carried to safety by a friend after a wall collapsed during violence between fans before the European Cup final between Juventus and Liverpool at the Heysel stadium in Brussels on May 29, 1985. Thirty nine people died and 600 were injured in the incident.

Nick Didlick / X00086

A man stands in front of a convoy of tanks in the Avenue of Eternal Peace in Tiananmen Square in Beijing on June 5, 1989.

Stringer / X80002

A Turkish riot police officer uses tear gas as people protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project in Taksim Square in central Istanbul on May 28, 2013.

Photographer's commentary: I was covering protests in Istanbul which began as a demonstration against government plans to demolish a small park in central Taksim square but evolved into one the biggest anti-government protests in over a decade.

I was standing between the protesters and the police as the police began firing tear gas at a close distance. The crowd started to run in different directions, causing chaos. I started shooting and the lady in the red dress was standing right at the front.

The picture depicts the somewhat unequal struggle between the police and the protesters by showing a police officer firing tear gas from such a close distance towards a woman who had little room to defend herself.

How popular this image became has actually made me proud. It was described as "iconic" by politicians, artists, writers and ordinary citizens. I have won around a dozen awards and I was and still am humbled by people's appreciation of my work over this picture.

Osman Orsal / X02255

A Haitian suspected of being a multiple assassin for exiled president Jean Bertrand Aristide's Lavalas party is detained in Petit Goave on March 3, 2004. The man was detained by armed citizens of Petit Goave who proceeded to stone him and then burn him alive.

Daniel Aguilar / X90024

An ethnic Albanian woman nurses her baby as she and another 2,000 refugees, displaced by the war in Kosovo, are allowed to enter Macedonia in the mountainous region near the border crossing of Blace on March 30, 1999. More than 2,000 Kosovo refugees entered Macedonia after crossing the mountains in south Kosovo overnight. The refugees were blocked by the Macedonian army for several hours and spent the night in the forest, but were later allowed to enter Macedonia after UNHCR officials put pressure on the Macedonian government.

Damir Sagolj / X90027

A would-be immigrant crawls on the beach after his arrival on a makeshift boat on the Gran Tarajal beach in Spain's Canary Island of Fuerteventura on May 5, 2006.

Photographer's commentary: I heard about a makeshift boat carrying migrants from Africa was on its way to the beach at Gran Tarajal, south of the island of Fuerteventura so I rushed there.

When I arrived, the migrants, who risk their lives trying to reach European soil in flimsy boats, were being treated by members of the Spanish Red Cross who were providing them with clothes and water. They were exhausted from their perilous journey.

The strength of this image is that it shows the contrasts in our society: on one side of the photograph you have people who seem to be enjoying the sun on the beach and on the other a man crawling through the sand after risking his life at sea.

Juan Medina / X01625

Lesleigh Coyer, 25, of Saginaw, Michigan, lies down in front of the grave of her brother, Ryan Coyer, who served with the U.S. Army in both Iraq and Afghanistan, at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia on March 11, 2013. Coyer died of complications from an injury sustained in Afghanistan.

Kevin Lamarque / X00157

A portrait of North Korea's founder Kim Il-Sung is illuminated on the side of a building in the capital Pyongyang early on Oct. 5, 2011.

Damir Sagolj / X90027

The northern lights are seen above the ash plume of Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull volcano on April 22, 2010.

Photographer's commentary: The ash cloud brought the greatest disruption to European air travel since World War II, and the only way to get to Iceland was to fly from North America. I travelled overnight, arriving at Keflavik airport at 6:30 a.m. on April 17.

In a rented car I drove east towards the ash plume on the horizon. The scale of the assignment had begun to sink in, and I realized it would require careful thinking, rather than instant reaction.

For images of the eruption itself I was dependent on the weather. The plume would be invisible if it was overcast, and if the wind died the ash would turn to a haze. For a photograph of lightning flashing inside the ash cloud I had to wait for several hours on a washed-out road, and physically hold my shutter open for more than two minutes.

Lucas Jackson / X90066

Marooned flood victims try to grab the side bars of a hovering army helicopter which arrived to distribute food in Pakistan's Punjab province on Aug. 7, 2010. Pakistanis desperate to get out of flooded villages threw themselves at helicopters as more heavy rain was expected to intensify both suffering and anger with the government. The disaster killed more than 1,600 people and disrupted the lives of 12 million.

Adrees Latif / X90022

Israeli soldiers mourn during the funeral of their comrade Alex Mashavisky at a cemetery in Beersheba on Jan. 7, 2009.

Photographer's commentary: I was in Israel to help out the Reuters Jerusalem office during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip in January 2009.

They asked me to go to Beersheba to cover the funeral of an Israeli soldier, Alex Mashavisky, who was killed in an operation in Gaza.

There was so much emotion at this funeral to begin with, and within minutes a rocket exploded near the cemetery and everybody had to fall to the ground. It was a really surreal and emotionally charged moment.

The place was so narrow and there were so many photographers. The challenge was to hold a spot where I would be able to see the ceremony.

Eric Gaillard / X00102

An injured child receives medical treatment after an earthquake in Port-au-Princeon Jan. 13, 2010. The 7.0 magnitude quake rocked Haiti, killing thousands of people as it toppled the presidential palace and hillside shanties alike and leaving the poor Caribbean nation appealing for international help.

Eduardo Munoz / X01440

A man clings to the top of a vehicle before being rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard from the flooded streets of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina on Sept. 4, 2005.

Photographer's commentary: I arrived in New Orleans three days after the hurricane struck, and was flown via a Coast Guard four-seat airplane from Alexander, Louisiana to the U.S. Coast Guard Station in New Orleans.

Unable to see anything other than the death and destruction visible through the open door, we began circling and descending and suddenly I saw a man, dressed in khakis, tennis shoes and shirtless, looking desperately toward us from the top of the van in rising flood water. With the helicopter rotating closer, he rolled to his side and clung to the top of the vehicle.

Moments later a rescue swimmer loaded him into a basket and he was raised into the helicopter. We then flew to Louis Armstrong Airport, where he was placed on a stretcher and provided medical attention.

It was odd to see someone, six days after the hurricane struck, sitting on top of the van, a tall can of Budweiser beer and a broom nearby, visible in other pictures that were filed. When he entered the helicopter, he asked of my camera "What's that?"

Robert Galbraith / X90034

A Lebanese man shouts for help for a wounded man near the site of a car bomb explosion in Beirut on Feb. 14, 2005. A massive car bomb killed Lebanon's former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri on Beirut's waterfront, witnesses and security sources said. At least eight others, some of them his bodyguards, also died.

Mohamed Azakir / X00013

Protesters hold signs behind Richard Fuld, Chairman and Chief Executive of Lehman Brothers Holdings, as he takes his seat to testify at a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the causes and effects of the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy, on Capitol Hill on Oct. 6, 2008. Fuld told Congress that U.S. banking regulators knew exactly how Lehman was pricing its distressed assets and about its liquidity in the months before its collapse.

Jonathan Ernst / X01676

President George W. Bush hands back a crying baby that was handed to him from the crowd as he arrived for an outdoor dinner with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Trinwillershagen, Germany on July 13, 2006.

Jim Bourg / X90054

President Ronald Reagan shakes hands at his first meeting with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to sign an arms treaty in Geneva on Nov. 19, 1985. The two leaders met for the first time to hold talks on international diplomatic relations and the arms race.

Stringer / X80002

Oil fire fighters from Boots and Coots try to put out an oil well fire in Al-Ahmadi where retreating Saddam Hussein forces had set fire to the oil wells on March 30, 1991.

Photographer's commentary: The workers were trying to contain the flames with a shield and tube when a blast of heat blew off the helmet of one of the workers.

The flames seem to dwarf the workers, who look almost helpless as they struggle against what looks like the very flames of hell.

To get access to the fires we had to drive through a lake of oil created from the wells. Once we got there, the heat was so intense that you we could not get close. A slight change of wind and we'd be covered in choking fumes.

It was 1991, the pre-digital age, and I was using Nikon F3P to transmit the picture. I had to return to my hotel room, process film, make a colour print, stick a paper-typed caption on the print and use a drum transmitter to send the picture. Initially we transmitted pictures on our satellite phone - which was as big as a large trunk suitcase that two people had to carry as it was so heavy.

Russell Boyce / X00036

Flames come out of the Air France Concorde seconds before it crashed in Gonesse near Paris Roissy airport in on July 25, 2000. All one hundred passengers and nine crew members on board the flight died. On the ground, four people were killed and one critically injured.

Andras Kisgergely / X01171

Palestinians try to run away from Israeli soldiers firing tear gas during Palestinian-Israeli clashes in the southern Gaza Strip town of Khan Younis on Oct. 20, 2000.

Reinhard Krause / X00149

A body is removed from the wreckage after a bomb went off in Nairobi on Aug. 7, 1998. The bomb, which killed more than 250 people and injured 5,000, was aimed at the U.S. embassy. It destroyed a neighboring building and badly damaged the embassy.

George Mulala / X00508

The fingers of malnourished one-year-old Alassa Galisou are pressed against the lips of his mother Fatou Ousseini at an emergency feeding clinic in the town of Tahoua in northwestern Niger, on Aug. 1, 2005. One of Niger's worst droughts in living memory destroyed much of October 2005's crop, leaving an estimated 3.6 million people short of food, including tens of thousands of starving children.

Finbarr O'reilly / X90055

Beachgoers sunbathe behind a wall of hay bales, used to absorb any oil that might come ashore, on Dauphin Island, Alabama, on May 11, 2010.

Photographer's commentary: I was in Alabama and Mississippi covering the BP oil spill and took this image while in a helicopter with the Alabama Army National Guard. We had been flying for a while, surveying the protective booms installed around the barrier islands in the Gulf of Mexico off the Mississippi coast, and were making our way back to the base.

It's always challenging photographing from a helicopter - apart from making sure the images are sharp despite the helicopter moving and bouncing around, images pass by fairly quickly so you have to be fast.

To me, this image shows an important aspect of the oil spill story: the impact on the daily lives of the residents and the significant, negative impact on tourism which is an important part of the region's economy. It also shows some of the effective and extremely low-tech ways to protect beaches from oil washing ashore - in this case simple hay bales.

Brian Snyder / X90051

A demonstrator pounds away at the Berlin Wall as East Berlin border guards look on from above the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin on Nov. 11, 1989.

Stringer / X80002

Opponents of Israel's disengagement plan from Gaza scream as they speak with a special evacuation policeman after the forces took over the roof top of the synagogue in the Jewish Gaza Strip settlement of Kfar Darom on Aug. 18, 2005.

Photographer's commentary: One of the most hardcore spots of "resistance" against the forces coming to evacuate the settlers was this settlement called Kfar Darom. The settlers and many of their supporters were barricaded on the roof of the synagogue and the picture was taken after special forces came to take them down in containers lifted by cranes.

Before it happened I spent a week getting to know the people so that I could get their permission to go with them onto the roof.

I think the power of this picture is that this situation is quite bizarre as on one hand it shows the boiling point of something that had been building up for months and was supposed to explode but on the other there was no violence at all; just some strange moments because at the end of the day there was very much of a feeling of brotherhood on both sides.

Nir Elias / X90070

Nelson Mandela, accompanied by his wife Winnie, walks out of the Victor Verster prison near Cape Town after spending 27 years in apartheid jails on Feb. 11, 1990.

Ulli Michel / X00189

A Russian police officer carries a released baby from a school seized by heavily armed masked men and women in the town of Beslan in the province of North Ossetia near Chechnya, on Sept. 2, 2004.

Photographer's commentary: The Beslan school siege took place on September 1, 2004 during a festive ceremony to launch the new academic year at school No.1. Pro-Chechen gunmen seized the school and took 1,300 hostages on the first day. Some 331 people were killed, half of them children.

On the second day of the siege, the captors were convinced to free several women with babies, so when a fighter of a special task unit was seen leaving the building with a child in his hands, there was hope that children could be saved.
I think that was why this photo was published on the front pages of numerous publications all over the world.

Viktor Korotayev / X00148

Rescue workers carry fatally injured New York City Fire Department Chaplain, Fether Mychal Judge, from one of the World Trade Center towers in New York on Sept. 11, 2001.

Shannon Stapleton / X90052