His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, on Wednesday honoured the winners of the 12th edition of the Arab Journalism Award (AJA) at a grand ceremony held at the closing of the two-day Arab Media Forum. The event was attended by H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and a crowd of thought and opinion leaders, as well as prominent media cultural and personalities in the region. The Arab Media Forum seeks to support the development of the Arab media sector through dialogue and exchange of opinion, while the Arab Journalism Awards recognises excellence and contribution to the development of the regional industry. As patron of the award, Sheikh Mohammed recognised the following media persons: Special Award: Khalfan Al Roumi, Chairman of AJA Board, for his tireless efforts and contributions to propel the award to prominence. a well-known national figure, Al Roumi held several ministerial portfolios for education, health, labour and social, and information and culture. Media Personality of the Year 2013: Hamdi Qandeel, a famous Egyptian media practitioner, author, lecturer, diplomat and political activist who dedicated his career for advancing Arab media and defending Arab causes. Best Columnist: Hazen Sagheya of Lebanon Other winners are: Investigative Reporting : Abdul Wahab Aleiwa of Al Wafd, Egyptian newspaper Economic Journalism:Khalid Al Biheiri of Al Roya, Omani newspaper Political Journalism: Othman Lehyani of Al Khabar, Algerian newspaper Press Interviews Journalism: Nidal Hamdan of Al Bayan, UAE newspaper Humanitarian Journalism: Hanan Khunduqji of Al Ghad, Jordanian newspaper Specialised Journalism: Rasha Abu Zaki of Al Akhbar, Lebanese newspaper Sport Journalism: Amin Al Bobali of Al Ittihad, UAE newspaper Best Picture: Alaa Badarneh of EU Agency News Outstanding Cartoon Works: Raed Khalil of Syrian Cartoon, Syrian cartoon Young Journalist: Huda Baroud of Palestine, Palestinian newspaper, Haitham Mahjoub of Al Masry Al Youm, Egyptian newspaper, and Esmahan Al Ghamedi of Al Riyadh, Saudi newspaper Organisers Dubai Press Club said: "Competition was fierce in this year's edition of the award which received more than 4,000 quality submissions that reflected a high sense of professionalism, creativity and dedication. I believe that all shortlisted nominees are winners and well deserve appreciation for their efforts."