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Documenting Sudan's civil war: Adriane Ohanesian

Courtney Tenz
June 9, 2016

Kenya-based photojournalist Adriane Ohanesian has won the Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award. Her photos document the fate of people in nearly-forgotten conflicts, such as in the region of Darfur.

Anja Niedringhaus Preis 2016, Copyright: Adriane Ohanesian
Image: A. Ohanesian

Adriane Ohanesian has won the second Anja Niedringhaus Courage Award, which will be awarded in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. on Thursday (09.06.2016). The prize recognizes the exemplary work of women photojournalists.

Ohanesian was chosen for her body of work: Since 2010, she has primarily focused on documenting the civil war in South Sudan and on fighting in the region, including most recently the conflict in Darfur.

The freelance journalist based in Nairobi has snapped powerful pictures at the border between Sudan and South Sudan as well as the Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan. Her work has been published by "Al Jazeera," "National Geographic," "Time" and "The Wall Street Journal."

"With my work, I just try to do my best to show people what is happening," Ohanesian told DW's Ines Pohl after she was announced as the winner in May. "I hope from there that can spark an idea, or spark some sort of movement to get people to wake up and see what's happening."

The International Women's Media Foundation, the organization which presents the Anja Niedringhaus Courage Award, posted this tweet, featuring a photo by Ohanesian from her work in South Sudan:

"Yes, sometimes I just have to cry while doing my work," Ohanesian told DW.

Alongside Ohanesian, two photojournalists will be honored at Thursday's ceremony: London-based Lyndsay Addorio and Bangkok-based Paula Bronstein. The three women are well decorated for their work documenting humanitarian crises, political protests, natural disasters and conflicts.

"We are proud to recognize this year's award honorees, who are a credit to their profession and to Anja's legacy," said Elisa Lees Muñoz, executive director of the International Women's Media Foundation (IWMF), which hands out the award.

"These remarkable and brave women are revealing difficult truths around the world through their pictures, and the Niedringhaus Award celebrates that service."

War photographer Anja Niedringhaus in 2005. Copyright: AP Photo/Peter Dejong/dpa
The prize was created in honor of photojournalist Anja Niedringhaus, who was killed while on duty in AfghanistanImage: picture-alliance/AP Photo

The IWMF is an organization dedicated to empowering women journalists worldwide as they bear witness to global issues.

With a grant from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, the IWMF created the award as a tribute to the Pulitzer-Prize winning photographer Anja Niedringhaus, who was killed in Afghanistan while reporting there for the Associated Press in 2014.

This year's selection jury included photo editors from the Associated Press, the New York Times and Photo II. Deutsche Welle is a media cooperation partner.

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