The World Press Photo Exhibition returns to Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall from 7 to 26 November. The free exhibition brings together award-winning photographs from around the world, capturing the most powerful, moving and sometimes disturbing images of the year.

This year, 98,671 images were submitted to the contest by 5,754 photographers, from 132 different nationalities. The exhibition features about 140 of the winning photographs.

John Stanmeyer won the World Press Photo of the Year 2013 competition with this photo of African migrants on the shore of Djibouti city at night, raising their phones in an attempt to capture an inexpensive signal from neighbouring Somalia — a tenuous link to relatives abroad.

01 John Stanmeyer
John Stanmeyer won the World Press Photo of the Year 2013 with this photo (John Stanmeyer, USA, VII for National Geographic)

Jillian Edelstein, one of the judges, said: "It's a photo that is connected to so many other stories—it opens up discussions about technology, globalisation, migration, poverty, desperation, alienation, humanity. It's a very sophisticated, powerfully nuanced image. It is so subtly done, so poetic, yet instilled with meaning, conveying issues of great gravity and concern in the world today."

Jury member David Guttenfelder said: "The photo is like a message in a bottle, it is one that will last for all of us. People will bring their own life experiences to it as they stand in front of it."