Documentaries about the Islamic State and its effects on Iraq and Syria were honoured at last night’s Rory Peck Awards.

It was the 20th anniversary of the awards, which recognise the achievements of freelancers working in trouble spots around the world.

Rory Peck Trust director Tina Carr said: “After twenty years, the mission of the Rory Peck Trust continues to provide practical and financial support to freelance journalists and their families worldwide.

“Tonight’s award winners and finalists demonstrate why - they bring us stories that are hard to reach and difficult to tell, and without their talent, determination and bravery our understanding of the world suffers.

“As journalists continue to be targeted all over the world, freelancers remain the most vulnerable. They deserve our recognition and support more than ever.”

Michael Harrit, marketing director for Sony Professional Europe’s Media Solutions division, which sponsored the awards, added: “Filming in countries like Syria, northern Iraq and Pakistan is an ever-growing challenge that requires skill, creativity and courage.”

The event was presented by Sky News special correspondent Alex Crawford and took place at London’s BFI Southbank.

The Winners

The Rory Peck Award for News

Aleppo’s Zein Al-Rifai for Aleppo: Life in Ruins, commissioned and broadcast by AFPTV and shot between June 2014 and February 2015.

Zein Al-Rifai covered the destruction of his home city by almost daily barrel-bombing investigated the effects on Syrian life in the rebel-held city.

Aleppo: Life in Ruins

The Rory Peck Award for News Features

Iraqi Zmnako Ismael for On the Road with Yazidis Fleeing Islamic State, a self-funded broadcast by Channel 4 News.

Zmnako captured the exodus of thousands of Yazidis from Mount Sinjar in norther Iraq in August 2014 in his travels from Syria’s Newroz refugee camp to Sinjar and back.

On the Road With Yazidis Fleeing the Islamic State

The Sony Impact Award for Current Affairs

Haider Ali won for Pakistan’s Hidden Shame, produced by Clover Films for Channel 4.

Ali’s coverage of his home country reveals how thousands of young boys across Pakistan fall victim to paedophile predators, many of whom are bus and truck drivers.

Pakistan's Hidden Shame

The Martin Adler Prize
Hassan Ashwor received the Prize for his work as a contact for visiting journalists and human rights organisations.

The local freelancer has become a key contact in Dohuk, northern Iraq, for those investigating atrocities perpetrated by the Islamic State, specifically against the Yazidi community.