Powerful WPP 2023 Photo of the Year shows devastation in Ukraine

Mariupol Maternity Hospital Airstrike by Evgeniy Maloletka, Associated Press

Iryna Kalinina (32), an injured pregnant woman, is carried from a maternity hospital that was damaged during a Russian airstrike in Mariupol, Ukraine, on 9 March 2022. Her baby, named Miron (after the word for ‘peace’) was stillborn, and half an hour later Iryna died as well. An OSCE report concluded the hospital was deliberately targeted by Russia, resulting in three deaths and some 17 injuries.

When Russian forces invaded Ukraine on 24 February 2022, they immediately targeted the strategically important port of Mariupol on the Sea of Azov. By 20 May, Russia gained full control of the city, which had been devastated by shelling, and tens of thousands of civilians had fled or been killed. Maloletka was one of the very few photographers documenting events in Mariupol at that time. The jury felt his story communicated the horror of the war for civilians; they praised the photographer’s resilience while working under immense pressure and imminent threat.

Global jury chair, The New York Times photo editor and co-founder of Diversify Photo, Brent Lewis has said, ‘The haunting image from the siege of Mariupol was unanimously chosen as the winner of the World Press Photo of the Year. With the vote being decided on the first anniversary of the beginning of the war in Ukraine, the jury mentioned the power of the image and the story behind it, as well as the atrocities it shows.’

He continued, ‘The death of both the pregnant woman and her child summarized so much of the war, as well as the possible intent of Russia. As one juror put it: “It’s like they are trying to kill the future of Ukraine.”‘


  1. Why isn’t the whole world revulsed, saddened and outraged by what the dirty, filthy, nazi pigs of putlerstan have been doing this past year and every blood-drenched year of fuhrer putler’s demonic reign?

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