France 24’s 'The 51%' programme wins UN journalism prize

France 24’s 'The 51%' programme wins UN journalism prize

A France 24 TV programme focused on women who are reshaping the world, "The 51%", won the UN Correspondents Association’s Ricardo Ortega Prize on Thursday for a special edition on female peacekeepers.

France 24 journalists Annette Young and Virginie Herz were awarded the prize at UN headquarters in New York for “Parity on the frontline: UN seeks to boost number of female peacekeepers,” which was broadcast on July 13 in both English and in French.

Nearly 8,000 women are involved in UN peacekeeping missions around the world, working in countries such as Cyprus, the DR Congo and Sudan. But they still only make up 10 percent of the staff on UN missions.

>> Watch: Parity on the frontline: UN seeks to boost number of female peacekeepers

In this award-winning special edition, Young heads to Cyprus, an island still divided between its Greek and Turkish communities, where UN troops are helping to keep the peace in this long-forgotten conflict. In the Cypriot capital Nicosia she met Elizabeth Spehar, one of the few women currently leading a peacekeeping mission, who talked about how to get contributing nations to play their own part in sending more women.

It was not the first time France 24 has been honoured by the UN Correspondents Association (UNCA). Reporter François Rihouay won the Ricardo Ortega Memorial Prize for broadcast journalism in 2017 for a video report entitled, “Timbuktu Revisited”.

The UNCA bestows the award for media coverage of the United Nations, its agencies or its field operations. The honour was named for Ricardo Ortega, a correspondent for Spain's Antena 3 TV who died while on assignment in Haiti in 2004. 

>> The 51%: A programme about women who are reshaping our world