More than 27,000 dead: This is the result of a two-year war on drugs in the Philippines. In 2016, Rodrigo Duterte became the President of the Southeast Asian republic. His campaign promised him to win the election: He threatened those connected to drug consumption and sales with the death penalty, called for vigilante justice and allowed the police to act with brutality under complete impunity. As President, Duterte has likened himself to Hitler and vowed to massacre millions of drug users. Dealers and users were murdered, as well as countless innocents and children – mostly the poor. An estimated 30 people are killed each day across the country. The United Nations appealed in vain to the Philippine government to investigate extrajudicial killings and to prosecute the perpetrators, while the International Criminal Court has begun preliminary examinations into these alleged crimes against humanity. The war continues however.
This photo reportage hopes to illuminate both the violent acts carried out in the Philippines as well as the questionable methods of Duterte and the police. With thousands dead in two years and with four years left in Duterte’s term, it has become more crucial than ever to record these atrocities.
Ezra Acayan is a documentary photographer based in Manila whose work primarily focuses on social issues and human rights. Currently, he is working on documentary reportage on the suffering and abuse experienced by communities under the Philippine government’s war on drugs.
In 2017, together with a team of Reuters journalists, he was awarded a special merit at the Human Rights Press Awards for multimedia reporting on the Philippine Drug War. In 2018, he received both the Ian Parry Scholarship Award for Achievement and the Lucie Foundation Photo Taken Emerging Scholarship, was named Young Photographer of the Year at the Istanbul Photo Awards.
This work – along with work by other journalists who cover the Philippine Drug War – has been exhibited in Geneva for two years as part of the Universal Periodic Review of the Philippines at the United Nations Human Rights Council. It has also been exhibited at the Foreign Correspondents Club in Thailand (FCCT), at the Prix-Bayeux Calvados Award for War Correspondents in France, at the WARM Festival in Sarajevo, and at the Lumix Festival for Young Photojournalism in Germany.
Ezra Acayan has completed multimedia work for various organisations such as Reuters, European Pressphoto Agency, Agence France-Presse, Deutsche Presse-Agentur, and the French Society magazine. He has also worked for NGOs such as Diakonie Katastrophenhilfe, Care International, and the French Red Cross. His work has appeared in Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, Vice, Washington Post, Al Jazeera, Le Monde, Stern, Paris Match, and more.
The International Academic Forum (IAFOR) was founded in Nagoya, Japan, in 2009 as a research organisation, conference organiser and publisher dedicated to encouraging interdisciplinary discussion, facilitating intercultural awareness and promoting international exchange, principally through educational interaction and academic research. By creating opportunities for dialogue between academics and thought leaders, IAFOR has become a pioneer in providing the research avenues and visionary development solutions that are necessary in our rapidly emerging globalised world.
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University of the Arts London (UAL) is in the top 6 universities in the world for art and design. We offer an extensive range of courses in art, design, fashion, communication and performing arts. Our graduates go on to work in and shape creative industries worldwide.
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Think Tank Photo designs camera carrying solutions for working professionals. Our products are born from the collaborative efforts of professional photographers and product designers, working together with a common goal — to create the most inventive and effective solutions for all photographic situations. We go to great lengths to listen to our core customers and translate their feedback in everything we create.
The company was founded in January 2005 by designers Doug Murdoch and Mike Sturm, and photographers Deanne Fitzmaurice and Kurt Rogers. Deanne Fitzmaurice won the prestigious Pulitzer Prize for photojournalism in 2005.
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MediaStorm is an award-winning film production and interactive design studio whose work gives voice and meaning to the most pressing issues of our time. Our stories demystify complex issues, humanize statistics, and inspire audiences to take action on issues that matter.
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