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Another year has come and gone and with it hundreds of thousands of images have recorded the world's evolving history; moments in individual lives; the weather and it's affects on the planet; acts of humanity and tragedies brought by man and by nature. The following is a compilation - not meant to be comprehensive in any way - of images from the first 4 months of 2012. Parts II and III to follow this week. -- Paula Nelson ( 64 photos total)
Fireworks light up the skyline and Big Ben just after midnight, January 1, 2012 in London, England. Thousands of people lined the banks of the River Thames in central London to ring in the New Year with a spectacular fireworks display. (Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

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World Press Photo, a non-profit organization based in the Netherlands, recently announced the winners of its 2012 photojournalism contest. More than 5,000 photographers from 124 countries submitted over 100,000 pictures to the competition. Top honors this year went to Samuel Aranda for his image of a woman holding a wounded relative during protests in Yemen. The prize-winning photographs will be assembled into an exhibition that will travel to 45 countries over the next year. Below is just a sample of this year's group of winners -- please visit the World Press Photo website to see them all. (See also the winners from 2011.) [32 photos]

First prize winner in the Spot News Singles category of the 2012 World Press Photo Contest, this photo by by Yuri Kozyrev, Noor Images for Time, shows rebels in Ras Lanuf, Libya, on March 11, 2011. (AP Photo/Yuri Kozyrev, Noor Images for Time)

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DAZED: A survivor of the crash of a Russian passenger jet was carried from an ambulance into Moscow’s Vishnevskogo hospital Tuesday. The plane exploded into flames after crashing on a highway just short of its airport; 44 people died and eight survived, officials said. (Maxim Shipenkov/European Pressphoto Agency)

STARTING THEIR DAY: Siblings Imran and Asifah, right, paused for a photo in a Mumbai slum‘s narrow alleyway before heading to school Tuesday morning. (Vivek Prakash/Reuters)

AGAINST PENSION CHANGES: Members of Unison, the U.K.’s second-largest union, voted at a conference in Manchester, England, Tuesday. Union members are considering a strike over a proposed pension overhaul. (Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

IN THE STORM’S PATH: Two cars were pulled into the ocean from a beach at Acapulco, on Mexico’s west coast, Tuesday. Hurricane Beatriz, a category-one storm, is nearing the Mexican coast. (European Pressphoto Agency)

TUCKERED OUT: Chinese soldiers slept on the ground Tuesday during a break in their flood-rescue work in in Lanxi, Zhejiang Province. Heavy rains have brought high water across the region, leaving two people dead and one missing. (ChinaFotoPress/Zuma Press)

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