Capturing the world through photography, video and multimedia

Connecticut state police officers escort children from Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., where a gunman opened fire, killing 26 people, including 20 children, Friday, Dec. 14, 2012.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Shannon Hicks / Newtown Bee

The two homes that were leveled and the numerous neighboring homes that were damaged from a massive explosion that sparked a huge fire and killed two people are shown in Indianapolis on Nov. 11. Nearly three dozen homes were damaged or destroyed, and seven people were taken to a hospital with injuries. The powerful nighttime blast shattered windows, crumpled walls and could be felt at least three miles away. Authorities have said they believe the explosion was intentional and caused by natural gas but have released no other details.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Matt Kryger / Indianapolis Star

Police try to help remove a car surrounded by water after its owner parked it on the bank to watch waves brought on by Typhoon Bolaven in Qingdao, in northeast China's Shandong province, on Aug. 28. Typhoon Bolaven --left a trail of death and damage in southwestern and south-central regions of the Korean peninsula on Aug. 28, and crossed into China early on Aug. 29.


A riot police officer is engulfed by flames from a petrol bomb thrown by protesters during clashes in Athens on Nov. 7.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Dimitri Messinis / Associated Press

Two Syrian rebels take sniper positions in the heavily contested neighborhood of Karmal Jabl in central Aleppo on Oct. 18.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Javier Manzano / AFP

A man carries puppies into a house as other dogs stay on the roof in a flooded area in Marikina City, east of Manila, Philippines, on Aug. 8, 2012. Widespread flooding killed at least 11 people, battered 1 million others and paralyzed the Philippine capital.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Aaron Favila / Associated Press

A bear that wandered into a University of Colorado, Boulder, dorm complex =falls from a tree after being tranquilized by Colorado wildlife officials on April 26. University police spokesman Ryan Huff said the bear was likely 1 to 3 years old and weighed somewhere between 150 and 200 pounds.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Andy Duann / CU Independent

Workers wear panda costumes as they carry a box to transport Giant Pandas back to the wild, at the Wolong National Nature Reserve in southwest China's Sichaun province on May 3. The bears will be left to learn crucial survival skills, and scientists plan to gradually reduce human interactions until they can live in the wild without assistance. Although there have been 10 attempts at setting pandas free over the past 30 years, only two are thought to have been successful.


Samantha Arevalo Salinas of Ecuador starts in a women's 800-meter freestyle swimming heat during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London on Aug. 2.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: David J. Phillip / Associated Press

Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso of Spain, left, and McLaren Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain, airborne right, crash during the first lap of the Belgium Formula One Grand Prix in Spa-Francorchamps circuit, Belgium on Sept. 2.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Luca Bruno / Associated Press

Pilot Felix Baumgartner of Austria jumps out of the capsule during the final manned flight for Red Bull Stratos on Oct. 14. In a giant leap from more than 24 miles up, Baumgartner shattered the sound barrier while making the highest jump ever with a tumbling, death-defying plunge from a balloon to a safe landing in the New Mexico desert.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Uncredited / Red Bull Stratos

Hikers watch an annular eclipse from Papago Park in Phoenix on May 20. The annular eclipse, in which the moon passes in front of the sun leaving only a golden ring around its edges, was visible to wide areas across China, Japan and elsewhere in the region before moving across the Pacific to be seen in parts of the western United States.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Michael Chow / The Arizona Republic

President Barack Obama is picked up by Scott Van Duzer, owner of Big Apple Pizza and Pasta Italian Restaurant, in Fort Pierce, Fla., during the second day of a two-day bus tour across Florida in September.


A Rohingya Muslim from Myanmar, right, who tried to cross the Naf river into Bangladesh to escape sectarian violence, cries near his family in a Bangladeshi Coast guard station in Teknaf on June 19, before being sent back to Myanmar.


Army soldiers attached to 2nd platoon, C troop, 1st Squadron (Airborne), 91st U.S Cavalry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team operating under NATO sponsored International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) protect a wounded comrade from dust and smoke after a bomb blast near Baraki Barak base in Logar Province on Oct. 13. The soldier, 21 year-old Pvt. Ryan Thomas from Oklahoma suffered soft tissue damage and, after surgery in Afghanistan, was scheduled to be evacuated to Germany.


Indian employees are evacuated from the Maharashtra state government building, which caught fire in Mumbai, on June 21. Hundreds of employees were evacuated from the seven-story government building as more than two dozen fire engines battled the major fire that raged for more than three hours in India's financial and entertainment capital.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Associated Press

Police surround the bodies of striking miners after opening fire on a crowd at the Lonmin Platinum Mine near Rustenburg, South Africa on Aug. 16. South African police opened fire on a crowd of striking workers at a platinum mine, leaving an unknown number of people injured and possibly dead. Motionless bodies lay on the ground in pools of blood.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Associated Press

Nepalese people gather around the burning wreckage of a Sita Air plane near Katmandu on Sept. 28. The plane, carrying trekkers to the Everest region, crashed and burned just after takeoff in Nepal's capital, killing the 19 Nepali, British and Chinese people on board.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Associated Press

Seawater floods the Ground Zero construction site in New York on Oct. 29. Superstorm Sandy forced mass transit, schools and financial markets to shut down and sent coastal residents fleeing. The recovery is ongoing.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: John Minchillo / Associated Press

A police officer secures an area before picking up a child crack addict sleeping on the sidewalk at the entrance of the Jacare shantytown during an operation to clean the streets of crack addicts in Rio de Janeiro on Sept. 12.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Christophe Simon / AFP

A crowd watches an F/A-18 Hornet fighter jet of the Swiss Air Force on Oct. 11 in Axalp, in the Bernese Oberland.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Fabrice Coffrini / AFP

People walk along an icy promenade on the shores of Lake Geneva in Versoix, Switzerland, on Feb. 5. Across Eastern Europe, thousands of people dug out from heavy snow that had fallen during a cold snap and killed hundreds of people.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Martial Trezzini / Keystone

Nik Wallenda walks over Niagara Falls on a tightrope on June 15. Wallenda finished his attempt to become the first person to walk on a tightrope 1,800 feet across the mist-fogged brink of roaring Niagara Falls. The seventh-generation member of the famed Flying Wallendas had long dreamed of pulling off the stunt, never before attempted.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Frank Gunn / The Canadian Press

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Near the end of the year, the wire services send out their top photos of the year. From those we’ve chosen our favorites.

Some of these images are part of larger collections. See them here:

Hurricane Sandy hammers East Coast

Underwater photos from the London 2012 Olympics

Living under siege: Life in Aleppo, Syria

South African police reportedly fire on striking miners

Obama bear-hugged at pizzeria

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