American photographer Anthony Suau has been named the winner of World Press Photo of the Year 2008 with a black and white image of an armed police officer moving through a repossessed home in Ohio. The image was part of a story commissioned by Time magazine.

Chair of the Jury MaryAnne Golon said of the image: ‘It looks like a classic conflict photograph, but it is simply the eviction of people from a house following foreclosure. Now war in its classic sense is coming into people’s houses because they can’t pay their mortgages.’

Fellow juror Akinbode Akinbiyi commented: “It is a very ambiguous image. You have to go into it to find out what it is. Then all over the world people will be thinking ‘this is what is happening to all of us.’

Prizes were awarded to 64 photographers from 27 countries, whose work covered the ten themed categories of the contest.

Anthony Suau will be presented with award, which includes 10,000 Euros and a Canon EOS 5D Mk.II, at a ceremony in Amsterdam on 3rd May.

Full list of winners and more images here.

 World Press Photo 2008

An armed officer of the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department moves through a home in Cleveland, Ohio, following eviction as a result of mortgage foreclosure. Officers have to ensure that the house is clear of weapons, and that the residents have moved out.

Anthony Suau