Photo of Azeri man jumping for joy at Şuşa’s liberation wins YTB ​​Special Award

A photograph of man celebrating after hearing that Azerbaijan forces had liberated the city of Şuşa / Shusha from occupation has won a Special Award in this year’s Press Photographs Contest of the Year.

The frame, taken by Uğur Yıldırım, a photojournalist for top Turkish daily Sabah newspaper, captures the moment a man jumps above the roof of a stationery old white car, his arms outstretched, his face screaming in delight, as another bemused man stands and leans on the car door on the driver side.

Yıldırım took the photo late last year, towards the end of a major Azerbaijan military offensive to liberate the Karabakh region of its territory after skirmishes on the border with neighbouring Armenia turned into full-blown conflict in September.

Azeri troops captured Karabakh’s second biggest city Şuşa on November 8, 2020, ending 28 years of Armenian occupation. The city is central to Azerbaijan’s history and culture.

The liberation of Şuşa brought huge joy to its Azeri inhabitants, with Yıldırım perfectly placed to photograph the celebrations.

His prize, and those of the other winners in the Press Photographs Contest of the Year will be presented in June by the award organisers YTB (Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar / Turks Abroad and Related Communities).

YTB received over 5,000 submissions for its 2021 Press Photographs Contest of the Year. Alongside the YTB Special Award, the jury has selected 28 winning photos from seven categories and seven photo series.