Last night  the Lowy Institute announced ABC Middle East correspondent Hayden Cooper as the winner of the 2014 Lowy Institute Media Award for his ABC Foreign Correspondent report on journalist Peter Greste. You can watch Hayden's acceptance speech above.

Other finalists selected by the judges were Amanda Hodge (The Australian) for her work on the Indian elections and sexual violence in India, Christopher Joye (Australian Financial Review) for his coverage of intelligence and spying issues, Michael Bachelard (Fairfax Indonesia correspondent) for his reporting on the Indonesian elections, and Michael Edwards (ABC) for his coverage of the polio epidemic in Pakistan.

'Cooper's coverage of the trial, and his compelling interviews with Greste's colleagues and family, exposed the personal risks all foreign correspondents take reporting from countries in turmoil. Cooper's telling of Greste's story is a deserving winner', said Lowy Institute Executive Director Michael Fullilove, who was a member of the Media Award judging panel along with former Australian Senator and diplomat Amanda Vanstone, multi award-winning journalist Chris Masters, former foreign correspondent Jane Hutcheon, and Lowy Institute Board Director Mark Ryan.

 The keynote address at last night's award ceremony was delivered by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who said 'We are often reminded that our freedoms, our way of life are secured because our defence forces are prepared to put their lives on the line. We should not forget that the price of the news we read every day, of the transparency, accountability indeed democracy that only a free press can ensure is all too often paid in lives and liberty put at risk by journalists like Peter Greste.'