Lefteris Pitarakis is The Associated Press’ Chief Photographer for Turkey and is based in Istanbul.
He started his photojournalism career in 1995 in his native Athens and joined the AP in 1998. Following several years of covering Greece and the Balkans, he was assigned to AP’s Middle East operations. From 2000 to 2005, he mainly documented the Palestinian uprising against Israel in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and also extensively covered the greater region. Additionally, he chronicled stories of conflict in Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia, Libya and Pakistan and the aftermath of the U.S. – led wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
From the Middle East he moved to London, where he was based from 2005 to 2015 covering the United Kingdom, Europe and Africa while continuing to travel to the Middle East on multiple assignments. His work has been published in major international publications and online media and has been exhibited throughout Europe and the United States. In addition to photography, he also works in video and multimedia.
He has received various awards. His coverage of the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah in Lebanon was part of a group of AP photographers who were finalists for that year’s Pulitzer Prize.
A strong advocate of ethics in photojournalism, he regularly presents his work and lectures about the value of ethics to university students and conferences throughout the U.K., U.S. and Europe.