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     © natalie keyssar//guatemala//july 2014. 

    Tom Stoddart/Reportage by Getty Images Tom Stoddart/Reportage by Getty Images Tom Stoddart/Reportage by Getty Images Tom Stoddart/Reportage by Getty Images

    'Physical attributes are important but it’s 90% from the neck up. Anyone who makes it into the Special Air Service (SAS) is very determined, never going to give up, very focussed and single-minded to the point of being a difficult person at times. When I went through the SAS selection there were 12 of us who made it out of 120 guys…we were individuals but we all thought the same and had the same thread that ran through us.' - Harry Taylor, co-founder of Mission X. The competition, which takes place in the Jordanian desert, pits special forces teams from various countries against each other in simulated battle events.

    See more images from Desert Warriors, by Tom Stoddart/Reportage by Getty Images.

    Special Forces teams from (clockwise from top left): China, Kazakhstan, United States, and Iraq. The Chinese ‘Snow Leopards’ won the 2014 competition.

    Ayia Napa, Cyprus - A Barcode bar employee dances on the bar at a hen party (AKA bachelorette party) for Jody from Manchester.

    Photographer Peter Dench explored the less-than-glamorous side of British nationals at play overseas. See more from his series The British Abroad.


    The weekend in Gaza - continued coverage from the Israel/Palestinian conflict

    From Top to Bottom:

    ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL - JULY 27: Smoke rises from Gaza Strip after Israeli shelling moment before the 24 hour ceasefireon July 27, 2014 on the Israeli/Gaza border, Israel.42 Israeli soldiers and over 1,000 Palestinians have been killed as the Israeli operation ‘Protective Edge’ nears three weeks. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)

    Rescue workers remove the body of a man, after digging him up from under the rubble of his home following an Israeli air strike on Beit Hanun, in the northern of Gaza strip, on July 26, 2014.
    (Photo credit MOHAMMED ABED/AFP/Getty Images)

    BEIT HANOUN, GAZA - JULY 26 : A Palestinian woman reacts amongst the debris of buildings as others try to find their belongings inside the debris of the buildings during a 12-hour humanitarian truce in Beit Hanoun, Gaza on July 26, 2014.
    (Photo by Ezz Zanoun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

    Children are seen behind a sheet which covers an improvised tent on July 27, 2014 in the garden of Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, where Palestinian displaced families who have fled their homes took refugee. (Photo credit MOHAMMED ABED/AFP/Getty Images)

    An Israeli soldier from the infantry unit sleeps on a slide at an Israeli village near the border with the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, on July 27, 2014, after returning from combat inside Gaza.
    (Photo credit GIL COHEN MAGEN/AFP/Getty Images)

    Palestinians carry the coffin of Jalila Ayyad, a Christian woman whose body was found under the rubble of her home after an Israeli airstike in Gaza City during her funeral on July 27, 2014.
    (Photo credit MOHAMMED ABED/AFP/Getty Images)

    For full caption info please follow this link

    Thanks to everyone who participated in this week’s #ReportageSpotlight, especially the Instagrammers who took this week’s selected photos (from top left): @barisacarli@ziksky@mohamadhshirazi@aqua_ch@nima_deimary@dubyo@michaeltrueblood@hamedbadami and @sevdafarrokhi. Every week we post our favorite pictures from Reportage’s Instagram followers. To participate, tag your best photos with #ReportageSpotlight. Using this hashtag entitles us only to repost your images on our Instagram account and the Reportage blog. Full terms & conditions here:


    Cortona, Italy | July 19, 2014
    Wag the Dog

    I’ll be posting some images from my latest trip to Cortona over the next few days. I spent time with several different photographers who each inspired me indifferent ways.

    You can find more of my Walkscapes work on its own dedicated and aptly named Instagram feed - @conceptual_ben

    #streetphotography #cortona #italy #cotm #reportage #photojournalism

    Competitor at the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics in Fairbanks, AK. (Photo by Katie Orlinsky for Al Jazeera America) Competitor at the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics in Fairbanks, AK. (Photo by Katie Orlinsky for Al Jazeera America)

    The World Eskimo-Indian Olympics were held last week in Fairbanks, Alaska, and Al Jazeera America reported on some of the 200 indigenous athletes in attendance:

    Ask WEIO athletes where they are from and the answer is always two parts. First is the name of a village far from the road system, usually on the coast or along an interior Alaska river. Chevak. Galena. Rampart. Deering. That is where family is, where subsistence hunting, fishing and gathering take place, where Native languages are spoken, where traditional games are practiced.

    Next comes where the athlete lives now. More often than not, it is one of Alaska’s larger cities, like Anchorage or Fairbanks. The urban/rural push-pull is a constant in Alaska. Culture and family draw people to the villages, but better jobs and education in the cities and, sometimes, social dysfunction and poverty in the villages, push people out.

    The games, which celebrate skills needed to live a rural life, are in flux.

    Read the article and see more photos from Reportage photographer Katie Orlinsky, on the Al Jazeera America website.

    "Most of the time [Floyd Mayweather] acted like I wasn’t there, which is something I’ve come to expect and even relish when working on ‘day in the life’ features for my clients. But having Mayweather look me in the eye and acknowledge my presence was the real challenge." - Reportage photographer Benjamin Lowy, who recently spoke with Rangefinder Magazine about his portraits of boxer Floyd Mayweather. Read more in Rangefinder’s digital edition.

    (Photo by Benjamin Lowy/Contour by Getty Images)

    Landmine victim Juan Lopez in Nicaragua. (Photo by Sebastian Liste/Reportage by Getty Images) Mr. Lopez's prosthetic legs. (Photo by Sebastian Liste/Reportage by Getty Images)

    "In Nicaragua…when they have rehabilitation centers, they are mostly in the capital, so it’s very difficult for people living in the countryside to get attention." - Sebastian Liste, photographer, on Nicaragua’s legacy of landmines.

    Before Nicaragua ratified the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention, in 1999, sixteen of its seventeen provinces were mine-affected, particularly rural communities and poorer areas. Just eleven years later, in 2010, Nicaragua was declared mine free, having cleared over 179,000 anti-personnel mines from its territory as well as half-a-million unexploded ordnance. There will no longer be new landmine victims in Nicaragua or in any other mine-free country, but this is of little help to survivors like Juan Lopez, above.

    Back in the 1980’s, during the civil war in Nicaragua, Lopez was an able-bodied combatant. Both parties to the conflict laid AP landmines, especially in the north along the Honduras border. After the war, Lopez began working as a freelance deminer for farmers hiring former combatants for land clearance. In 1997, Lopez was demining a coffee plantation and stepped on an anti-personnel mine, blowing off one foot. A year later, he was demining his own farmland, stepped on another mine, and lost his other foot. Photographer Sebastian Liste met Juan Lopez while covering the legacy of landmines in Nicaragua. Watch this video to hear Sebastian Liste tell the story of Juan Lopez and other landmine victims.

    In late 2013 and early 2014, five Reportage photographers undertook a group project, commissioned by the ICRC, to document landmines, cluster munitions, and unexploded remnants of war. For this project, Brent Stirton worked in Mozambique, Veronique de Viguerie in Bosnia, Marco Di Lauro in Iraq, Sebastian Liste in Nicaragua, and Paula Bronstein in Laos. Watch this space in the following week for videos about landmine clearance in these other countries.

    ALEPPO, SYRIA - MARCH 20, 2014: Rana, 20 years old, student: Om Faraj, 30 years old housewife, no children: Om Ahmad, 72 years old, housewife with 3 children:

    Syria’s Women of War

    These are the members of the only all-female fighting unit in the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo, photographed by Reportage’s Sebastiano Tomada in March of this year. They said they had come together to augment the fighting power of the Free Syrian Army. “Women are fighting on all the fronts now,” a female activist told Sebastiano. “Women often transport weapons and supplies for rebels as they are less likely to be searched at army and security checkpoints.”

    This series was recently awarded first prize by the jury of PX3: Prix de la Photographie Paris, the exhibition for which was held last week. See more of Sebastiano’s work on the Reportage website.

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