The CEI and the South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), in special partnership with the German political foundation Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS), have announced the winners of the “CEI SEEMO Award for Outstanding Merits in Investigative Journalism” 2013: the Bosnian-Herzegovinian reporter Mahir Šahinović receives the award in the section “Professional Journalists”, and Bulgarian Rosen Tsvetkov in the section “Young Professional Journalists”. Special Mention to Investigative Reporting Project Italy.
Mahir Šahinović, reporter at the Center for Investigative Reporting in Sarajevo (CIN) and at the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), has been awarded for his commitment in investigative journalism undertaken with great efforts in terms of investigation and research of sources. He has worked in different countries and various languages, often under difficult conditions. One of the recent and remarkable works he has carried out is linked to an international stock exchange scam. Šahinović managed to find out that the two Bosnian and Serbian owners of a Switzerland-based company had set up a network of illegal call centres that traded in shares on the German stock exchange. He carried out a thorough investigative research consulting many documents, and managed to identify and interview some of the victims of this fraud. Many newspapers and TV stations in the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland and the Balkan countries picked up his story.
Rosen Tsvetkov is a journalist at the Bulgarian National Television. Recently, he has conducted successful investigations and undercover reportings that have had a major impact on Bulgarian society. His work has provoked public debates and political reactions on the importance of democratic values and civil society rights. Tsvetkov is the author of various investigative documentaries about sensitive topics such as illegal vote buying, missing people, children trafficking and youth violence.
Mahir Šahinović and Rosen Tsvetkov will officially receive the awards offered by the CEI (4,000 EUR and 1,000 EUR respectively) on the occasion of the South East Europe Media Forum to be held in Sarajevo on 7-8 October, 2013.
Moreover, it was decided to assign a Special Mention to the Investigative Reporting Project Italy (IRPI) in order to acknowledge the role and importance of this newly established centre promoting investigative reporting carried out by Italian journalists mostly cooperating with world-wide investigative networks.
This year, 41 nominations covering 11 countries have been submitted, which confirms the importance and impact of this initiative in our region. The applications were examined by the three organising institutions, with overall coordination by Oliver Vujovic (SEEMO), Barbara Fabro (CEI) and Christian Spahr (KAS Media Program South East Europe), and the valuable expert advice of the investigative reporter Saša Leković (Zagreb, Croatia).
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