As 2016 finally comes to an end, we can all let out a collective sigh of relief. This year we’ve seen heartbreaking scenes – from the utter devastation of the city of Aleppo, to the millions of refugees and displaced people stranded without a home, to the distraught faces of children in Yemen, their lives torn apart by war. But we’ve also seen scenes of pure joy – family members reunited, prisoners of conscience walking free and refugees finally reaching safety.
Click through the gallery of some of the most powerful images to come across our desks in 2016.
Warning, these images contain some graphic scenes.
Najibah tries to comfort her daughter Zahra during a visit to her father’s grave. © Andrew Quilty. Winner of the 2016 Media Awards.
A Field Medic at the Oceti Sakowin Camp holds up a fist in triumph. © Oceti Sakowin Camp/Flickr.
© AMEER ALHALBI/AFP/Getty Images
Hussein is 8 years old, he is from Iraq and he suffers from liver disease. According to the doctors in Iraq, Hussein may need a transplant. He is trapped in the island of Chios his family. © Giorgos Moutafis/Amnesty International
Sur, the central district of Diyarbakir, was the site of clashes between the Turkish state and the armed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), leaving its residents displaced. © Guy Martin/Panos
Adnan Hashim Ali, 59, a refugee from Iraq, is now living in an abandoned building in Bulgaria. © Boryana Katsarova/ Amnesty International
© KARAM AL-MASRI/AFP/Getty Images
Baynazar Mohammad Nazar was a husband and a father of four – and a patient killed during the attack on the MSF hospital in Kunduz. © Andrew Quilty. Winner of the 2016 Media Awards.
Teresa, a young refugee, attends a screening of the Olympics at the Kakuma refuge camp in Northern Kenya. © Karen Kasmauski
Having spent 43 years and 10 months in solitary confinement in a Louisiana state prison, Albert finally walked free in 2016. “I can’t emphasise enough how important getting letters from people around the world is,” said Albert. © Travis Spradling/The Advocate via AP
Drug suspects are rounded up during an anti-illegal drugs operation at the Manila Islamic Center in Manila. AFP/Getty Images
Afghan asylum seekers Hasan Remezonei, his wife Farshta with their baby Asma and son Amir lived in the city park for three months in the city of Batam. © Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images
A man cries after a mosque is burned down in Myanmar. © Ye Aung Thu/AFP/Getty Images
A man prays on the Migrant Offshore Aid Station ship Topaz Responder after being rescued off the coast of Libya. © REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi
A Syrian man carries a baby after removing him from the rubble of a destroyed building following a reported air strike in the Qatarji neighbourhood. ©AMEER ALHALBI/AFP/Getty Images
A 12-year-old Yemeni boy, Hussein Ahmad, recovers at the intensive care unit. In February he received gunshot wounds to the abdomen. © Rawan Shaif
Members of the White Helmets search for victims amid the rubble of a destroyed building following reported air strikes in the rebel-held Qatarji neighbourhood of of Aleppo. © AFP/Getty Images
Family members welcome student protest leader Phyoe Phyoe Aung (R) as she arrives for a hearing at her trial in Tharrawaddy town, Bago Region in Myanmar on April 8, 2016. © YE AUNG THU/AFP/Getty Images
A Yemeni boy carries jerrycans to fill them with water from a public tap amid an acute shortage of water supply to houses in the capital Sanaa. © AFP/Getty
Protesters hold banners and chant slogans during a Black Lives matter rally in Melbourne © Asanka Brendon Ratnayake/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Relatives of Michael Siaron, killed by suspected vigilantes, grieve during his burial ceremony in Manila. © NOEL CELIS/AFP/Getty Images