Photojournalist Kerim Okten killed in lightning accident

EPA photographer Kerim Okten, who chaired the sports jury at this year's World Press Photo, died in a motorbike accident in Turkey

Olivier Laurent — 11 April 2014

Kerim Okten WPP portrait Photo by Aybige Mert 003

Kerim Okten

© Aybige Mert

“We have lost a great friend and esteemed colleague,” says European Pressphoto Agency’s editor-in-chief Hannah Hess. “For many within the epa family Kerim was a beloved friend, a brother and one of the finest. We extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife, his family, friends and colleagues.”

Kerim Okten, 42, died on 10 April when his motorbike was hit by lighting.

Born in 1972 in Istanbul, Okten first worked for a national newspaper and magazines before joining epa in 1998, “since when he has covered stories in Turkey, Iran, Azerbaijan, among others and has also participated in major international sporting events,” says his agency. “In 2012, when he was chief photographer in Turkey, Kerim left Istanbul for London for his new role as UK chief photographer. Kerim returned to Turkey in December 2013.”

He chaired the sports category competition at this year’s World Press Photo.