Plight of young migrants in Greek ports earns Italian photographer prestigious award

Images of a young Moroccan migrant being hit by a speeding car in a race attack in the port town of Corinth, migrant youths waiting for the right moment to jump a fence to board a ferry to Italy in Patra and the squats set up in disused trains and industrial areas by irregular migrants biding their time until they find a way out of Greece, have earned Italian photographer Alessandro Penso the prestigious Terry O'Neill TAG award, it was announced on January 18.

Penso followed a group of young migrants aged 14-18 and including Mostafa El Mouzdahi, the youth hit by a Corinth local, in 2012, documenting their efforts to elude arrest and sneak onto trucks and ferries heading to Italy and other European destinations amid growing hostility from the local population and a spike in a racially motivated attacks.

According to the TAG judges, the series, titled "Adolescence Denied," "captures [migrants'] lives in limbo when they are left stranded looking for both safety and a future. We hope his work will help inform future generations of the depth of the crisis."