Local Testimony is the annual regional exhibition of photojournalism that runs concurrent to the prestigious World Press Photo exhibition of international press photography.

The yearly local exhibition features the best documentary and press photos from Israel and the Palestinian Authority chosen by an independent jury out of thousands of entries submitted for competition by professional photographers working in the region.

The show is organized each year by a guest curator to reflect the sequence of yearly events and to present selected images documenting moments of cultural, social and human significance together with media value.

Below we present the First Prize winners in the categories of Nature and Environment, Sports, Religion and Community, Urbanism and Culture and, of course, News.

Photographer Doron Nissim used the black and white geometry of the barbed wire barrier on the Egyptian border to make a statement about the harsh means used to stop the flood of illegal immigrants attempting to flee Africa for the relative safety of Israel.

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Parkour or Free Running is the sport that uses city streets and structures as an running obstacle course. Here, photographer Efrat Saar caught urban athlete Ofer Blutrich in seemingly effortless motion above the Yarkon River.

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In this photo, entitled “Purification”, Omer Messinger captures a powerful moment between Christian mother and son being baptized in the muddy waters of the Jordan River.

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Settlement life and suburban lifestyle merge in this picture by photographer Tali Mayer of youths dipping in the Ein Dvir (Ein ed-Duweir) spring overlooking the Giv’at Ze’ev neighborhood north of Jerusalem.

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Avishag Shaar-Yashuv took first place in the “News” category with this photo that also provides a bit of political commentary. In it, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and wife Sarah are framed Last Supper-style, at the Mimouna festival in Or Akiva with hosts Mayor Yaakov Edri and former mayor Simha Yosipov.

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The Local Testimony exhibition first appeared in 2003 and has since drawn thousands of visitors each year to the Eretz Israel Museum in Tel Aviv where it is considered a major cultural event in the field of Israeli photojournalism. For more information,  visit the Local Testimony website.