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Here is a collection of the 30 most powerful Associated Press news photos of 2012. Keep in mind that some of these photos are a bit shocking so viewer discretion is advised. 

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama spar during the second presidential debate at Hofstra University, Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012, in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

A waitress carries beer mugs in the Hofbraeuhaus tent after the opening of the famous Bavarian “Oktoberfest” beer festival in Munich, southern Germany, Saturday, Sept. 22, 2012. The world’s largest beer festival, to be held from Sept. 22 to Oct. 7, 2012, will see some million visitors. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

In this Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012 photo Ultra-Orthodox Jews gather for the traditional Jewish wedding of Chananya Yom Tov Lipa, the great-grandson of the Rabbi of the Wiznitz Hasidic followers, in the ultra-Orthodox town of Bnei Brak near Tel Aviv, Israel.(AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

Indian soldiers from the Border Security Forces atop camels stand at attention in front of the Presidential Palace during a ceremony in preparation for the annual Beating Retreat in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012. India marks Republic Day on Jan. 26. (AP Photo/Kevin Frayer)

The Northern Lights are seen in the skies near Faskusfjordur on the east coast of Iceland Thursday March 8, 2012. A solar storm shook the Earth’s magnetic field early Friday, but scientists said they had no reports of any problems with electrical systems. After reports Thursday of the storm fizzling out, a surge of activity prompted space weather forecasters to issue alerts about changes in the magnetic field. (AP Photo/Jonina Oskardottir)

Mireia Arnau, 39, Mirian Burrueco, 30, reacts behind the broken glass of her shop stormed by demonstrators during clashes with the police at the general strike in Barcelona, Thursday, March 29, 2012. Spanish workers livid over labor reforms they see as flagrantly pro-business staged a nationwide strike Thursday and tried to bring the country to a halt by blocking traffic, closing factories and clashing with police in rowdy demonstrations. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)

Muslim pilgrims circle the Kaaba as pray inside the Grand mosque in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012. The annual Islamic pilgrimage draws three million visitors each year, making it the largest yearly gathering of people in the world. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)

Occupy Wall Street protestor Chris Philips screams as he is arrested near Zuccotti Park, Monday, Sept. 17, 2012, in New York. Multiple Occupy Wall Street protestors have been arrested during a march toward the New York Stock Exchange on the anniversary of the grass-roots movement. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Indians feed birds from a boat on the River of Yamuna as it is enveloped by winter morning fog in New Delhi, India, Friday, Jan. 20, 2012. (AP Photo/Kevin Frayer)

Fellow protesters try to extinguish the fire as a Tibetan man, identified as Jampa Yeshi, is engulfed in flames after self-immolating at a protest in New Delhi, India, ahead of Chinese President Hu Jintao’s visit to the country Monday, March 26, 2012. The Tibetan activist lit himself on fire at the gathering and was rushed to hospital with unknown injuries, reports said. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Sea water floods the Ground Zero construction site, Monday, Oct. 29, 2012, in New York. Sandy continued on its path Monday, as the storm forced the shutdown of mass transit, schools and financial markets, sending coastal residents fleeing, and threatening a dangerous mix of high winds and soaking rain. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo)

President Barack Obama, right, is picked-up and lifted off the ground by Scott Van Duzer, left, owner of Big Apple Pizza and Pasta Italian Restaurant during an unannounced stop, Sunday, Sept. 9, 2012, in Ft. Pierce, Fla. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Vice President Joe Biden’s talks to customers during a stop at Cruisers Diner, Sunday, Sept. 9, 2012, in Seaman, Ohio. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Men stand by an abandoned ship that lays beached near Takwa Bay just off the coast of Lagos, Nigeria on Wednesday, March 14, 2012. Abandoned ships are an environmental threat to the area as the wrecks of various large rusting hulks litter the coastline of Nigeria, without the funds or incentive to clean-up the strand. (AP Photo/Jon Gambrell)

Lawmakers from pro-presidential and oppositional factions in the parliament session hall in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2012. A violent scuffle erupted in Ukraine’s parliament over a bill that would allow the use of the Russian language in courts, hospitals and other institutions in the Russian-speaking regions of the country. (AP Photo/Maks Levin)

An Afghan refugee boy poses with a plastic rifle as he and other children celebrate the first day of the Eid al-Fitr festival, which marks the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, in a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan, Monday, Aug. 20, 2012. Muslims around the world are celebrating Eid al-Fitr, marking the end of Ramadan, the Muslim calendar’s ninth and holiest month during which followers are required to abstain from food and drink from dawn to dusk. (AP Photo/Muhammed Muheisen)

People try to salvage what they can after a tornado destroyed homes in their neighborhood Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012, in Harrisburg, Ill. The tornado that blasted Harrisburg, killing six, was an EF4, the second-highest rating given to twisters based on damage. Scientists said it was 200 yards wide with winds up to 170 mph. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

A woman waits to hear about her sister, a teacher, following a shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., about 60 miles (96 kilometers) northeast of New York City, Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. An official with knowledge of Friday’s shooting said 27 people were dead, including 18 children. It was the worst school shooting in the country’s history. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

A village boy leads his goat past a parched pond on the outskirts of the eastern Indian city of Bhubaneswar, India, Thursday, May 17, 2012. Huge swathes of rural farmland has turned dry as farmers await the annual monsoon rains which, according to the India Meteorological Department, are expected to reach on time this year. (AP Photo/Biswaranjan Rout)

A detainee peers through the jail bars at a police station in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, March 8, 2012. A wave of violence has made Honduras among the most dangerous places on Earth, with a homicide rate roughly 20 times that of the U.S. rate, according to a 2011 United Nations report. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)

A villager offers flowers to a female adult elephant lying dead on a paddy field in Panbari village, about 50 kilometers (30 miles) east of Gauhati, India, Saturday, Sept. 1, 2012. The elephant was hit by a train and killed while crossing railway tracks with a herd of wild Asiatic elephants. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

A driver maneuvers his classic American car along a wet road as a wave crashes against the Malecon in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012. Hurricane Sandy blasted across eastern Cuba on Thursday as a potent Category 2 storm and headed for the Bahamas after causing at least two deaths in the Caribbean. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

In this Monday, Oct. 29, 2012 photo, a rebel sniper aims at a Syrian army position, seen with another rebel fighter reflected in a mirror, in a residential building in the Jedida district of Aleppo, Syria. Syrian fighter jets pounded rebel areas across the country on Monday with scores of airstrikes that anti-regime activists called the most widespread bombing in a single day since Syria’s troubles started 19 months ago. (AP Photo/Narciso Contreras).

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and his vice presidential running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and his wife, Janna, walk together from their campaign planes at Akron-Canton Regional Airport in Akron, Ohio, Friday, Oct. 26, 2012. Ryan met Romney on the tarmac after his plane landed at the airport. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

A Greenpeace activist, dressed as a polar bear, sits inside a police car after being detained outside Gazprom’s headquarters in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012. Russian and international environmentalists are protesting against Gazprom’s plans to pioneer oil drilling in the Arctic. (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)

Syrian man cries while holding the body of his son near Dar El Shifa hospital in Aleppo, Syria, Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/ Manu Brabo)

A Sadhu, or a Hindu holy man, takes a dip at Sangam, confluence of the Rivers Ganges, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati, during the annual traditional fair of Magh Mela in Allahabad, India, Monday, Jan. 30, 2012. Hundreds of thousands of devout Hindus bathe at the confluence during the astronomically auspicious period of over 45 days celebrated as Magh Mela. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

U.S. President Barack Obama, left, and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev stand together at the end of a bilateral meeting at the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, South Korea, Monday, March 26, 2012. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

A parking lot full of yellow cabs is flooded as a result of superstorm Sandy on Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 in Hoboken, NJ. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes)

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish boys dressed for Purim pose for a photograph during celebration of Purim festival in Bnei Brak, near Tel Aviv, Israel, Wednesday, March 7, 2012. The Jewish holiday of Purim celebrates the Jews’ salvation from genocide in ancient Persia, as recounted in the Scroll of Esther. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

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