Thumb sm
Sample media
TALPAPRIL2017-18
London
By Tom Price
13 Nov 2015

Still photography selection from various assignments and projects.

Frame 0004
Christians Farming on ISIS Frontline
al-Qosh, Iraq
By rsoufi
09 Dec 2014

December 9, 2014
Al-Qosh, Iraq

Last season Amir and Adib Gerges, sibling farmers, were unable to sell their harvest because of an ISIS attack on their homes, in the town of al-Qosh in the largely Christian Nineveh Valley, forced them to flee. Since then, their town has been retaken by the Kurdish Peshmerga and the brothers have returned to work on their farms, despite the fact that ISIS controls territory less than 10km away. The brothers are some of the very few farmers who were brave enough to return to their land. Other farmers either ran away from the conflict or are too scared to return because of the ongoing threat of fighting and land mines laid by retreating ISIS fighters. The brothers heard about the 13-year-old son of a farmer who died after stepping on a mine, in the neighboring town of Tel Isqof. Amir and Adib say that, although their safety is not guaranteed, they have no choice but to stay and work on their ancestral land.

Transcription:

Adib Gerges, Farmer (Man, Arabic)
(00:18-00:27) Interviewer: How much wheat did you plant today?
Adib: “Approximately 40-50 Dunam.”
Interviewer: How many Dunams left to plant?
Adib: “About 20-30 Dunams.”

Amir Gerges, Farmer, (Man, Arabic)
(01:08-01:17) Interviewer: Aren't you afraid?
Amir: “We are counting on God. We are not doing anything wrong.”
(01:22-01:42) Interviewer: You are in an unsafe area, in Nineveh valley. What guarantees do you have that it is safe to keep working on your land? Do you have hope?
Adib: “We are counting on God and God will help us, we hope for things to be resolved.”

(03:24-03:28) Interviewer: What is this?
Adib Gerges: “Seeds for wheat .”

Worker, (Man, Arabic)
(03:38-03:46) Interviewer: Are you not afraid to work here?
Worker: “No why would I be afraid? God is with us and he will help us, why would we be afraid?

(03:57-04:44) Interviewer: How do you feel when ISIS is so close to you?
Adib: “The Peshmerga are here, and we wish for better things to come.”
Interviewer: How much did you harvest?
Adib: “Out of 100 Dunams, we harvested 30.”
Interviewer: What did you do with it?
Adib: “We did not take it to the market yet.”
Interviewer: Why?
Adib: “We did not have time when the conflict happened. We left the area and did not have time to take the wheat to market so it stayed packed in the houses.”

(04:56-05:37) Interviewer: When did you start farming?
Adib: “It is a very old profession, our fathers and grand-fathers worked in cultivation and we are continuing on the same path.”
Interviewer: Do you intended to leave your land?
Adib: “No, our land is very precious, we cannot leave it.”
Interviewer: “Many Christians left their land and went to Europe and many other places.”
Adib: “What can I tell you? Each person does what he pleases.”
Interviewer: What do you think?
Adib: “We hope for the best and that we never have to leave our land.”

(05:57-07:14) Interviewer: Many Christians left the area, but you stayed to guard your land. Why?
Amir: “Yes, the land is very precious, we cannot leave or land. Our country is also precious. This situation will definitely come to an end and the problems will be solved. We work, benefit, and raise our children well. We give them good education and live well. That is what we should do. War and fighting helps nobody.”

(07:32-07:49) Amir: “A person does not abandon his land, his home, and his country. Wherever this person goes, he will find himself a stranger. We cannot leave our land. It is too valuable to us.”

(08:00-08:40) Amir: “The Pershmerga forces are controlling the area. One farmer stepped on a ground-mine, it exploded and he died. He was 13 years old, and had three siblings. It happened about 10-15 days ago.”
Interviewer: Who planted those mines?
Amir Gerges: “Nobody except ISIS.”

(08:50-09:14) Amir: “We have no manure so we bought some from the black market. Concerning gas, we received help from Kurdistan.”

Frame 0004
Orphaned Brothers Struggle to Survive...
Damascus
By Rame ALsayaed
13 Aug 2014

al-Hajar al-Aswad, Damascus
November, 2014

Youssef, 8 years old
Ahmed 12 years old
Um Farah, Aunt

Youssef and Ahmed are two young orphans who are struggling to survive with their two sisters. After losing their father and mother a couple of years ago, the children now struggle to survive in the besieged Damascus neighborhood of al-Hajar al-Aswad.

The children's father was killed during clashes with the Syrian army in their native Deir Ez Zour. Shortly after their father's death, the situation in Deir Ez Zour became too violent and Um Youssef escaped with the children to al-Hajar al-Aswad, a neighborhood in southern Damascus.

In the beginning of 2012, when the mother was standing in line to get some bread for her children, the Syrian government bombed the bakery and Um Youssef was severely injured. Due to the siege imposed on the area by the government, she was not able to get proper treatment for her wounds and she died shortly after. Youssef, Ahmed, and their two sisters became orphans.

After losing their mother, the children's aunt, Um Farah started looking after them. However, their lives did not get easier as Um Farah's ability to care for the children was limited as she was already poor herself and had her own children to look after. Regardless of the challenges, Um Farah did not give up on Youssef and his siblings, and tried to provide for them. However, the siege and resulting poverty forced Youssef and Ahmed to begin providing for themselves.

Now, Youssef and Ahmed scour the streets of al-Hajar al-Aswad for food and anything that they can use to survive.

A typical day for Ahmed and Youssef begins early when they go searching for drinkable water. After their search for water, they head to school in a makeshift classroom that was established by volunteers in al-Hajar al-Aswad. For the boys, school is considered they only good thing in their lives during the war. However, Youssef usually leaves in the middle class to go reserve a place in the line for the public kitchen. Once he reserves his spot he heads back to school.

After school is over, Youssef returns to the kitchen to pick up the food. They then take the food home to have a meal with the rest of the family.
After taking a short rest, they go out searching for firewood, which is the only material available under siege that can be used for cooking and heating. After an exhausting day they go to sleep.

Youssef and Ahmed can no longer remember cartoon shows; they have not watched any since the electricity was cut off two years ago. The only thing they care about is helping their aunt provide food and other needs for the family.

Youssef and Ahmed are examples of many Syrian orphans who struggle to survive.

The Syrian government imposed a siege on al-Hajar al-Aswad at the end of 2012 and the siege has thus far resulted in the death nearly 70 people from starvation and dehydration. The situation is getting worse after the regime increased the siege by cutting off the water in al-Hajar al-Aswad.
TRANSCRIPT:

Interviewer:
Ho do you spend your day Youssef?

Youssef:
We wake my aunt up to tell her that we are going to get water, so she would not worry about us. After we are done, we go to school, and when it is time to go to the kitchen, we take permission from the teacher and leave to go put the buckets and claim our place in line. Then we go back to school and after we are done we go to the kitchen, get the food, and come back home.

Interviewer:
Youssef what do you wish for?

Youssef:
To have my mother and father alive. When I see children with their parents, I feel sad, I see them with their parents, playing and joking, but I cannot do that because my parents are dead and I have nobody but my aunt.

Interviewer:
Youssef what do you want to be when you grow older?

Youssef:
I want to become an FSA fighter

Interviewer:
Why do you want to become and FSA fighter?

Youssef:
I want vengeance from the people who killed my mother and father.

Interviewer:
Ahmed, what do you wish to become when you grow older?

Ahmed:
I want to become a doctor because when my mother was injured, there were no doctors to treat her. That is why I want to become a doctor, so I can treat the ill and the injured.

Interviewer:
Ahmed, what do you wish for?

Ahmed:
I wish the old days would return and I can go back and play with the children I used to play with, and to go back to school and forget about everything and not wake up early to go look for firewood, water and food. That is how we spend our days, very tiring.

Um Farah, their aunt:
Their mother died while she was at the bakery getting bread. A bomb was dropped and her kidney was injured. And their father, he died before their mother did. He was going with some people and carrying a gun and some people betrayed them and 100 men were killed. Their father was one of them. They have nobody, I brought them to look after them and I will not give up on them. For their bad luck, things got worse and life got more difficult. We have been under siege for a year, without food or medical care or anything. We go to the garden and get some edible plants while the children go to the public kitchen and get some food, that is how we are managing.

Interviewer:
How many children are they?

Um Farah, their aunt:
They are four, two older girls and two boys.
That is how we are living, the children go everyday to get water from a place far away, it has been two months since they cut off the water.

Interviewer:
How do the children treat you?

Um Farah, their aunt:
They are great, they call me mom and I do not make them feel that I am only their aunt. I love them very much, and I treat them as if they were my own children.

The teacher:
Youssef’s case is similar to many cases we have here at the school. This child lost his family and he no longer has people to care for him. In the beginning, we felt that he is lonely and isolated, until we knew what his problem was, and as much as possible we tried to push him to communicate with the other children. In addition to that, similar to many other children, they bring buckets and container and take permission to leave class in order to go to the public kitchen and get food so they can survive.

Thumb sm
Libyan Rebel's Brother Calls for Mili...
Triploi, Libya
By Tripcarbons
09 Apr 2013

Two months after the death of Ali Abdelhamid Ben Oun and his brother is still waiting to see justice. Ali Abdelhamid Ben Oun survived fighting as a rebel in Libya’s bloody revolution only to be killed in an RPG attack at a checkpoint in February this year.

Thumb sm
Island Of Twins
Alabat Island, Philippines
By U.S. Editor
02 Mar 2013

There are around sixty pairs of twins living in a small town on Alabat Island. Eudosia and Antonia, who will be turning 82 next year, are the oldest, while the five month-old babies, Jane and Joy, are the youngest pair on the island.

According to the mayor, the population of the island is composed of 4% of twins of the 12,039 residents of their town. When he and his wife migrated to the island in 1980s they were amazed that the island had so many twins. Even the former mayor of the island had a twin brother. Town folks were shocked when they thought they'd seen that the dead mayor brought back to life, but later learnt that the former mayor has a twin brother.

No studies have been conducted on the island to investigate why the number of twins in this small town is growing. According to a study conducted between 1996 to 2006, the Philippine Obstetric and Gynecologic Society found out that there was a 182% increase in multiple pregnancies in 35 year-old women due to the use of fertility drugs. Due to the remoteness of the island and the limited access to fertility drugs, other influences could be considered such as inheritance of twinning or the food intake of mothers.
According to Wikipedia, Yoruba in South Africa has the highest rate of twinning in the world, with 45-50 twin sets (or 90-100 twins) per 1,000 live births, possibly because of high consumption of a specific type of yam containing a natural phytoestrogen which may stimulate the ovaries to release an egg from each side.
The main source of sustenance on the island is farming and fishing. According to the oldest midwife in the island, heredity is the major culprit of twinning in the island, and so far, their island has the highest population of twins in the entire Philippines.

Thumb sm
Island of Twins (11 of 23)
Alabat Island, Philippines
By Sherbien Dacalanio
03 Feb 2013

The twins loves singing and playing the guitar.

There are around 60 pairs of twins in a small town on Alabat Island. Eudosia and Antonia are the oldest twins living in the island turning 82 next year,w hile the five month-old babies, Jane and Joy, are the youngest twins on the island.
According to the mayor, the population of the island is composed of .4% of twins of the 12,039 residents of their town. When he and his wife migrated to the island in 1980s they were amazed that the island had so many twins. As a matter of fact, the former mayor of the island had a twin brother. Town folks are shocked when they think they've seen that the dead mayor is alive, but later learn that the former mayor has a twin brother.
No studies have been conducted on the island as to why the prevalence of twins in this small town is growing. According to a study conducted between 1996 to 2006, the Philippine Obstetric and Gynecologic Society found out that there was 182% increase in multiple pregnancies in 35 year-old women due to the use of fertility drugs. Due to the remoteness of the island and the limited access to fertility drugs, other influences could be considered such as inheritance of twinning or the food intake of mothers.
According to Wikipedia, Yoruba in South Africa has the highest rate of twinning in the world, with 45-50 twin sets (or 90-100 twins) per 1,000 live births, possibly because of high consumption of a specific type of yam containing a natural phytoestrogen which may stimulate the ovaries to release an egg from each side.
The main source of sustenance on the island is farming and fishing and according to the oldest midwife in the island, heredity is the major culprit of twinning in the island, and so far, their island has the highest population of twins in the entire Philippines.

Thumb sm
Mourning Death of Brothers
Taftanaz, Syria
By Rachel Beth Anderson
29 Apr 2012

Taftanaz, Syria

Family members mourn the death of their two brothers who were members of the FSA.

Thumb sm
A Woman Hiding
Saraqib, syria
By Rachel Beth Anderson
29 Apr 2012

Hiding her identity, a woman tells the tale of the killing of her two sons and two brothers by government forces.

Thumb sm
Mourning Death of Brothers
Taftanaz, Syria
By Rachel Beth Anderson
29 Apr 2012

Taftanaz, Syria

Family members mourn the death of their two brothers who were members of the FSA.