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Ricardo Moraes

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Reuters photographer Ricardo Moraes spent time documenting a religious fraternity called O Caminho, (The Way), a group of Franciscan monks and nuns who help the homeless on the streets of Rio de Janeiro. They consider the election of Pope Francis, the first pontiff to take the name of St Francis of Assisi, to be a confirmation of their beliefs in poverty and simplicity. -- Reuters ( 20 photos total)
Brother Jose Wellington Damasio Antonio, a member of the Franciscan fraternity O Caminho, prays in the chapel of fraternity's house in the Campo Grande neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro on April 2. (Ricardo Moraes/Reuters)     

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The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, or Rio+20, begins today in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. An outgrowth of the Earth Summit held in Rio in 1992, the conference is designed to bring together 50,000 delegates from state governments, institutions, and non-governmental organizations to create measures to reduce poverty while promoting clean energy, decent jobs, and sustainable use of resources. The conference has attracted many protests and parallel events, as diverse groups struggle to share the world stage and make their voices heard. Collected here are just a few of the scenes from Rio+20. [37 photos]

An indigenous child from Kayapo tribe attends first indigenous assembly for the Rio+20 Conference at Kari-Oca village in Rio de Janeiro, on June 14, 2012. Indigenous people from around the world are visiting the village for the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. (Reuters/Ricardo Moraes)

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CASTING SHADOWS AND BALLOTS: A man cast a shadow against a pillar as he entered a polling station in Wickenburg, Ariz., Tuesday. Voters cast ballots for Republican candidates in primaries in Arizona and Michigan. (Don Emmert/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

OUT OF TUNE: Workers hauled away an old piano from an Occupy London site in front of St Paul’s Cathedral Tuesday. Police said 20 people were arrested as officers removed tents and equipment from outside the 300-year-old church, where demonstrators had camped since mid-October. (Matt Cetti-Roberts/London News Pictures/Zuma Press)

DIY PLANE: Farmer Li Jingchun, top, watched as his relatives checked out his self-made aircraft in Shenyang, Liaoning province, China, Tuesday. The plane, made mostly made of recycled iron, cost the aircraft enthusiast about $6,000 to make, according to local media. (Sheng Li/Reuters)

MOTHER VOTES: A woman held her baby as she showed her voter identification card in Noida, India, Tuesday. Voting is taking place over seven days in Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state. (Parivartan Sharma/Reuters)

SON MOURNS: Police officer Vinicius Figueiredo cried as he walked past the coffin of Roberto Lopes dos Santos in Rio de Janeiro Tuesday. Mr. Figueiredo’s father, Carlos Alberto Vieira Figueiredo, and Mr. Lopes dos Santos died in a fire at a Brazilian research station in the Antarctic. (Ricardo Moraes/Reuters)

SYRIA’S DEAD: Bodies of two people who were killed in heavy shelling by government forces were covered by a mat near Idlib, Syria, Tuesday. Oppositions members and the activist group Avaaz said they helped smuggle a wounded British photographer out of the country into Lebanon. (Zohra Bensemra/Reuters)

GOING THE DISTANCE: Louisiana State University cornerback Morris Claiborne ran a drill at an NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis Tuesday. (Dave Martin/Associated Press)

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A last blast before the observance of Lent, Carnival has evolved in many parts of the world with Christian traditions to be the biggest party of the year. Traditions vary from country to country, and even from region to region, but most places celebrate with a parade filled with masks, music, and ecstatic revelers. The world's biggest party happens in Rio de Janeiro, where millions fill the streets as the parade enters the Sambadrome. Collected here are pictures of Carnival in many forms as celebrated in various parts of Europe, Latin America, and North America. -- Lane Turner (41 photos total)
A performer from the Beija Flor samba school parades during Carnival celebrations at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro on Feb. 20, 2012. Millions watched the sequin-clad samba dancers at Rio de Janeiro's iconic Carnival parade. (Silvia Izquierdo/Associated Press)

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Yesterday I decided to try an experiment: I solicited reader requests for news photos. I asked people on Twitter and Google+, "Would you like to see a good photo of a particular subject? A high-res version of a photo you've already seen somewhere else? A photo from a particular photographer or event? If I have access and can find it, I'll try to post it" (details). The response was great, the subject matter was varied, and the task of finding the images and composing this entry was great fun. Images ranged from massive solar flares to tiny insects, taken in places from Thailand to outer space. If you enjoy this experiment, let me know in the comments, and I may develop it into a more regular feature. To all those who made requests, thanks so much, I hope you like what I was able to find. [29 photos]

Beth Winter (@bwinter) and Spidler both asked for a higher resolution version of "Anonymous in Polish parliament". -- Lawmakers from the leftist Palikot's Movement cover their faces with masks as they protest against ACTA, or the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, during a parliament session, in Warsaw, Poland, on January 26, 2012, after the Polish government signed the agreement. Poland's plans to sign ACTA sparked attacks on Polish government websites and street protests in several Polish cities this week. (AP Photo/Alik Keplicz)

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From the uprisings across the Arab world to the devastating earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan, there was no lack of news in 2011. Reuters photographers covered the breaking news events as well as captured more intimate, personal stories. In this showcase, the photographers offer a behind the scenes account of the images that helped define the year.

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RIO RAID: Authorities patrolled Rio de Janeiro’s Rocinha slum Monday. About 3,000 police officers and soldiers raided the crime-ridden slum a day earlier. Officials hope to have the area under control in time for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics. (Ricardo Moraes/Reuters)

OPEN WIDE: A child received a polio vaccination at a health center in San’a, Yemen, Monday. (Yahya Arhab/European Pressphoto Agency)

MAYDAY: Responders worked to extinguish flames on the Sergei Abramov ship at a pier in Moscow Monday. There were no immediate reports of injuries or casualties. (Maxim Shipenkov/European Pressphoto Agency)

KIDS BEING KIDS: Schoolchildren dressed as brides and grooms waited to perform during Children’s Day celebrations at a school in Amritsar, India, Monday. The day is meant to promote the welfare of children. (Narinder Nanu/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

PHILIPPINES FIRE: A man collected scrap metal from his burnt home after a fire in Quezon City, Philippines, Monday. About 100 homes were gutted. There were no immediate reports of injuries. (Rouelle Umali/Xinhua/Zuma Press)

BOMBER KILLED: An Afghan soldier stood guard near the scene where security forces shot dead an alleged would-be bomber in Kabul, Afghanistan, Monday. Regional leaders will meet at the venue later this week. (Musadeq Sadeq/Associated Press)

STREET VENDORS: A family sold tea, pastries and cigarettes at their cart on a street in Hyderabad, India, Monday. (Noah Seelam/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images)

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AT EACH OTHER’S THROATS: Futuro e Libertà and Lega Nord politicians fought during a Chamber of Deputies meeting in Rome Wednesday. Lega Nord doesn’t want to raise the retirement age to 67. (Giuseppe Lami/European Pressphoto Agency)

WARY AFGHANS: Youths stood near a fuel truck that exploded in Parwan Province, Afghanistan, Tuesday. A bomb hidden inside the truck killed at least five people as a crowd gathered to collect leaking fuel. (Muhammed Muheisen/Associated Press)

CITY BY THE SEA: A man sunbathed on Icaraí Beach in Niterói, Rio de Janeiro, in the background, Tuesday. (Ricardo Moraes/Reuters)

RAIL DANGEROUS: Commuters sat on the roof of a packed train and dangled from its doors as the train arrived at the Manggarai railway station in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday. The state railway operator canceled dozens of trains to accommodate upgrade work. (Beawiharta/Reuters)

CENTRAL FOCUS: Men sifted through garbage that was dumped near Hebron, West Bank, Wednesday. (Abed Al Hashlamoun/European Pressphoto Agency)

CAUTION SIGN: A flood victim sat on a plastic basket and held a sign that read ‘drive slow’ in Bangkok, Thailand, Wednesday. Tens of thousands of residents jammed highways and bus stations to flee the capital. Floodwaters have killed at least 373 people nationwide since July. (Sakchai Lalit/Associated Press)

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