The 56 most powerful Reuters photographs ever taken

In the three decades since its inception, Reuters and its award-winning photographers have seen a lot, including wars and natural disasters, elections and scandals, protests and peace treaties. Reuters’ photographers have been there to capture it all.

To mark the photo agency’s 30th anniversary, Reuters has compiled its best and most important photos to date, which you can see here. To use their words, we wish them another 30 years of “creating iconic images, recognised around the world.”

Editor’s note: Many of the images in this slideshow depict graphic violence, injury, and nudity, and many are upsetting.

(All captions by REUTERS)

Sgt. William Olas Bee, a U.S. Marine from the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, has a close call after Taliban fighters opened fire near Garmser in Helmand Province of Afghanistan in May of 2008.

Petrol sprays on the Formula One racing car of Netherland's Jas Verstappen seconds before the car and the crew of Benetton Ford caught on fire during refueling at the German F-1 Grand Prix in Hockenheim in 1994.

A Russian police officer carries a released baby from a school seized by heavily armed masked men and women in the town of Beslan in the province of North Ossetia near Chechnya in 2004.

A man clings to the top of a vehicle before being rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard from the flooded streets of New Orleans, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, 2005.

Israeli soldiers mourn during the funeral of their comrade Alex Mashavisky at a cemetery in Beersheba in this January 7, 2009 photo.

A Georgian man cries as he holds the body of his relative after a bombardment in Gori, 50 miles from Tbilisi in August 9, 2008.

Staff members stand in a meeting room at Lehman Brothers offices in the financial district of Canary Wharf in London in September, 2008 during the stock market crash and financial crisis.

A Turkish riot policeman uses tear gas as people protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul in 2013.

A woman cries as she cannot find her husband and 4-year-old daughter on the top of the ruins of a destroyed school in earthquake-hit Sichuan province of China on May 17, 2008.

The Northern Lights are seen above the ash plume of Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull volcano in the evening in this April 22, 2010 photo.

Beach goers sunbathe behind a wall of hay bales, used to absorb any oil that might come ashore, on Dauphin Island, Alabama in May of 2010.

Unidentified bodies lie on a street in the Jabalya refugee camp in northern Gaza Strip in March 2003.

Opponents of Israel's disengagement plan from Gaza scream as they speak with a special evacuation policeman after the forces took over the roof top of the synagogue in the Jewish Gaza Strip settlement of Kfar Darom in Gush Katif settlements bloc in 2005.

Oil fire fighters from Boots and Coots try to put out an oil well fire in Al-Ahmadi where retreating Saddam Hussein forces had set fire to the oil wells, in this March 30, 1991 photo.

A would-be immigrant crawls on the beach after his arrival on a makeshift boat on the Gran Tarajal beach in Spain's Canary Island of Fuerteventura on May 5, 2006.

Bucharest's residents protect themselves from the crossfire during clashes in the Republican square in Bucharest, December, 1989.

AFP photojournalist Kenji Nagai lies dying after police and military officials fired on him in Yangon, Myanmar on September 27, 2007.

An Albanian man carries a child to a US Marine CH53 Super Stallion helicopter as it lands at Golame beach near the port of Durres, in this March 16, 1997 picture.

Nelson Mandela, accompanied by his wife Winnie, walks out of the Victor Verster prison near Cape Town after spending 27 years in apartheid jails on February 11, 1990.

An opposition supporter holds up a laptop showing images of celebrations in Cairo's Tahrir Square, after Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak resigned in February, 2011.

Frantic Kurdish refugees struggle for a loaf of bread during a humanitarian aid distribution at the Iraqi-Turkish border in this April 5, 1992 photo.

A demonstrator pounds away at the Berlin Wall as East Berlin border guards look on from above the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin in November, 1989.

The bomb damaged area of the City of London is seen in this April 24, 1993 file photo after two blasts ripped through the buildings in the area. Dozens of people were injured in the blast caused by IRA bombs.

Romanian parents carry a small casket and cross as they arrive at a Bucharest hospital to collect the body of their dead baby who died of AIDS on February 6, 1990.

A man, famously known as 'Tank Man,' stands in front of a convoy of tanks in the Avenue of Eternal Peace in Tiananmen Square in Beijing in this June 5, 1989 photo.

Diana Princess of Wales cradles a young child stricken with cancer during a show at the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital in Lahore, February, 1997.

Rescue workers carry fatally injured New York City Fire Department Chaplain, Fether Mychal Judge, from one of the World Trade Center towers in New York, during the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York City.

The fingers of malnourished one-year-old Alassa Galisou are pressed against the lips of his mother Fatou Ousseini at an emergency feeding clinic in the town of Tahoua in northwestern Niger, in this August 1, 2005 photo.

Soviet Leader Mikhail Gorbachev (L) congratulates East German Leader Erich Honecker with a kiss after Honecker's re-election as General Secretary of the Communist Party Congress in East Berlin in April, 1986.

A body is removed from the wreckage after a bomb went off in Nairobi, August 7, 1998. The bomb, which killed more than 250 people and injured 5,000, was aimed at the U.S. embassy. It destroyed a neighbouring building and badly damaged the embassy.

Flames come out of the Air France Concorde seconds before it crashed in Gonesse near Paris' Roissy airport on July 25, 2000. All one hundred passengers and nine crew members on board the flight died. On the ground, four people were killed and one critically injured.

Palestinians try to run away from Israeli soldiers firing teargas during Palestinian-Israeli clashes in the southern Gaza Strip town of Khan Younis in October, 2000.

Sprinter Ben Johnson wins the gold medal in the 100m sprint at the Seoul Olympics in this September 24, 1988 photo. Behind him are (L to R) Calvin Smith, Linford Christie and Carl Lewis. Johnson later lost the medal when he tested positive for steroids.

An Indian woman mourns the death of her relative (L) who was killed in the tsunami in Cuddalore, some 112 miles south of the southern Indian city of Madras in this December 28, 2004 photo. The South East Asia Tsunami killed 230,000 people in 14 countries, making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in recorded history. Indonesia was the hardest-hit country, followed by Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand.

U.S. President Ronald Reagan (R) shakes hands at his first meeting with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to sign an arms treaty in Geneva, November 19, 1985. The two leaders met for the first time to hold talks on international diplomatic relations and the arms race.

A man rinses soot from his face at the scene of a gas pipeline explosion near Nigeria's commercial capital Lagos in this December 26, 2006 photo. Up to 500 people were burned alive when fuel from a vandalised pipeline exploded in Nigeria's largest city. Hundreds of residents of the Abule Egba district went to scoop fuel using plastic containers after thieves punctured the underground pipeline overnight to siphon fuel into a road tanker, locals said.

U.S. President George W. Bush hands back a crying baby that was handed to him from the crowd as he arrived for an outdoor dinner with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Trinwillershagen, Germany in July, 2006.

China's national flag is raised during the opening ceremony of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games at the National Stadium.

U.S. Marine Corp Assaultman Kirk Dalrymple watches as a statue of Iraq's President Saddam Hussein falls in central Baghdad on April 9, 2003. U.S. troops pulled down a 20-foot high statue and Iraqis danced on it in contempt for the man who ruled them with an iron grip for 24 years.

A U.S. soldier of 2-12 Infantry 4BCT-4ID Task Force Mountain Warrior takes a break during a night mission near Honaker Miracle camp at the Pesh valley of Kunar Province of Afghanistan in August, 2009.

A mourner wearing a mask to ward off SARS hides under an umbrella during the funeral of SARS doctor Tse Yuen-man in Hong Kong in 2003. Between November 2002 and July 2003, an outbreak of SARS in southern China caused 774 deaths in multiple countries with the majority of cases in Hong Kong according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

A Lebanese man shouts for help for a wounded man near the site of a car bomb explosion in Beirut in this February 14, 2005 photo. A massive car bomb killed Lebanon's former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri on Beirut's waterfront, witnesses and security sources said. At least eight others, some of them his bodyguards, also died.

Marooned flood victims try to grab onto the side bars of a hovering army helicopter which arrived to distribute food supplies in the Muzaffargarh district of Pakistan's Punjab province in August 2010. Pakistanis desperate to get out of flooded villages threw themselves at helicopters as more heavy rain was expected to intensify both suffering and anger with the government. The disaster killed more than 1,600 people and disrupted the lives of 12 million.

An injured child receives medical treatment after an earthquake in Port-au-Prince in this January 13, 2010 photo. The 7.0 magnitude quake rocked Haiti, killing thousands of people as it toppled the presidential palace and hillside shanties alike and leaving the poor Caribbean nation appealing for international help.

Protestors hold signs behind Richard Fuld, Chairman and Chief Executive of Lehman Brothers Holdings, as he takes his seat to testify at a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the causes and effects of the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy, on Capitol Hill in Washington in October, 2008. Fuld told Congress that U.S. banking regulators knew exactly how Lehman was pricing its distressed assets and about its liquidity in the months before its collapse.

Lesleigh Coyer, 25, of Saginaw, Michigan, lies down in front of the grave of her brother, Ryan Coyer, who served with the U.S. Army in both Iraq and Afghanistan, at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia in this photo from 2013. Coyer died of complications from an injury sustained in Afghanistan.

A picture of North Korea's founder Kim Il-sung decorates a building in the capital Pyongyang in this October 2011 photo.

In this September 1993 photo, U.S. President Bill Clinton (C) looks on as Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin (L) and Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) leader Yasser Arafat shake hands after the signing of the Israeli-PLO peace accord at the White House.

Officials in protective gear check for signs of radiation on children who are from the evacuation area near the Fukushima Daini nuclear plant in Koriyama on March 13, 2011. The biggest earthquake to hit Japan on record struck the northeast coast, triggering a 10-metre tsunami that swept away everything in its path, including houses, ships, cars and farm buildings on fire and caused the meltdown of the Fukushima nuclear power plant.

An ethnic Albanian woman feeds her baby as she and another 2,000 refugees, displaced by the war in Kosovo, are allowed to enter Macedonia in the mountainous region near the border crossing of Blace in March of 1999. More than 2,000 Kosovo refugees entered Macedonia after crossing the mountains in south Kosovo overnight. The refugees were blocked by the Macedonian army for several hours and spent the night in the forest, but were later allowed to enter Macedonia after UNHCR officials put pressure on the Macedonian government.

A young Rwandan refugee who traveled from Bukavu with several thousand others shivers in the early morning in this November 1996 photo before getting back on the road to the border. He was part of a group of some 20,000 refugees, many suffering from disease and malnutrition, who had made their way into Goma after being on the road for over one month.

A Haitian suspected of being a multiple assassin for exiled president Jean Bertrand Aristide's Lavalas party is detained in Petit Goave in 2004. The man was detained by armed citizens of Petit Goave who proceeded to stone him and then burn him alive.

Bodies of people activists say were killed by nerve gas in the Ghouta region are seen in the Duma neighbourhood of Damascus August in this 21, 2013 photo. Syrian activists said at least 213 people, including women and children, were killed in a nerve gas attack by President Bashar al-Assad's forces on rebel-held districts of the Ghouta region east of Damascus.

Rebel fighters jump away from shrapnel during heavy shelling by forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi near Bin Jawad on March 6, 2011 file photo. Rebels in east Libya had regrouped and advanced on Bin Jawad after forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi ambushed rebel fighters and ejected them from the town earlier in the day.

Displaced people from the minority Yazidi sect, fleeing violence from forces loyal to the Islamic State in Sinjar town, walk towards the Syrian border on the outskirts of Sinjar mountain near the Syrian border town of Elierbeh of Al-Hasakah Governorate in 2014. The Islamic State, which had declared a caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria, prompted tens of thousands of Yazidis and Christians to flee for their lives during their push to within a 30-minute drive of the Kurdish regional capital Arbil.

An injured soccer fan is carried to safety by a friend after a wall collapsed during violence between fans before the European Cup final between Juventus and Liverpool on May 29, 1985 at the Heysel stadium in Brussels. 39 people died, and a further 600 were injured.

Want to see more amazing photojournalism?

A Jewish settler struggles with an Israeli security officer during clashes that erupted as authorities evacuated the West Bank settlement outpost of Amona, east of the Palestinian town of Ramallah, in Feb. 1, 2006.

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