Powerful and poignant, the World Press Photo Exhibition showcases the highs and lows of 2013.

This is the fifth consecutive year that Auckland Rotary Club has brought the exhibition to New Zealand.

“Each time we host this exhibition, we are reminded how relatively peaceful New Zealand is, and how fortunate we are given all that is happening in the world,” Craig Dealey, president of Auckland Rotary says.

“Rotary supports global awareness, and the quest for international harmony. And this exhibition is a graphic reminder of the world’s obligations to its people, here and overseas. We hope that bringing this exhibition to Auckland will make people more internationally aware, and perhaps more socially responsible.”

The top prize was won by American photographer John Stanmeyer, for a National Geographic magazine shot of African migrants on the shore of Djibouti city at night, raising their phones to try to get reception from neighbouring Somalia. “If they move their phone in the air they will get a signal,” Stanmeyer says. “That is the tenuous link that connects us all together.”

The exhibition also features a series by Wellington-born, human rights photographer Robin Hammond on the treatment of mental health sufferers in South Sudan.

"People in this industry look at this work and they say ‘You really should have some signs of hope, this is a bit depressing.’ That is the point – this is almost completely hopeless.

"One of the main reasons why I am doing this work is that mental health is neglected world-wide, but in these countries, it is completely neglected."

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