22 Feb 2013 12:24

ITAR-TASS observer Alexander Konovalov wins Vitaly Dzhibuti award

Alexander Konovalov, an observer with the news service of the information agency ITAR-TASS, has won the national annual award named after Vitaly Dzhibuti for the Best Coverage of Military Issues in the Russian Media, founded by the international information group Interfax and the Russian Defense Ministry.
"Twelve people representing the leading information agencies and press organizations were nominated for the 2012 Vitaly Dzhibuti award. Most of the jurors voted for Alexander Konovalov," Russian Deputy Defense Minister Nikolai Pankov said on Friday.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has backed the idea of establishing this award, he said. "He plans to personally participate in the award ceremony, which will be held in the near future," Pankov said.
"We are especially glad that the first winner of this award is Alexander Vasilyevich Konovalov, who was a good friend of Vitaly Revazovich Dzhibuti," Interfax‘s General Director Mikhail Komissar said.
Komissar said Dzhibuti had worked for Interfax from its foundation and was a prominent journalist. He was given the most difficult tasks to cover the work of the Defense Ministry and other defense and law enforcement agencies, as well as visits and negotiations conducted by top military officials. Vitaly Dzhibuti became editor-in-chief of Interfax-Military News Agency in September 2011.
"Vitaly Dzhibuti was not only a wonderful journalist and a real professional, but he was also the heart and soul of the team. His untimely death on February 14, 2012 at the age of only 49 is a huge loss, not only to the Interfax team, but also to the entirety of Russian military journalism," Komissar said.
As a military correspondent, Vitaly Dzhibuti worked in virtually all problem zones, both in Russia and on the territory of the former Soviet Union, demonstrating reserve, courage, and initiative. He was awarded an order for Personal Courage, a medal for Services to the Fatherland of the Second Degree, a medal for Services to the Fatherland of the First Degree, and other awards.
Interfax established a national annual award for the Best Coverage of Military Issues in the Russian Media to commemorate Vitaly Revazovich Dzhibuti. Journalists reporting on military and defense industry issues whose publications have drawn the most response in society are eligible for the award.
The winners are selected by a special jury comprising Defense Ministry officials, public officials, and the most authoritative employees of the Interfax Information Services Group and public organizations.
The winner gets a special certificate and a financial award of 100,000 rubles.