Armenian photographer Anush Babajanyan has won the World Press Photo award for long-term projects on a single theme. The Battered Waters reflects on water access issues of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.
The project, shot for VII Photo and National Geographic Society, explores the impact of water management after the end of the Soviet Union which has been made worse by the climate crisis.
Babajanyan’s work, spanning years, documents the resilience of people living in Central Asia.
“Water intertwines with their lives,” explains the photographer.
“People’s lives are also changing because the climate is changing, and they have to adapt to that, too. I wanted to capture this powerful spirit,” she says.
Anush Babajanyan is a photographer whose work focuses on social narratives and personal stories. She is a member of VII Photo Agency and is a National Geographic Explorer. Babajanyan has photographed in Nagorno-Karabakh for over six years, compiling the photography in her book A Troubled Home.
Evgeniy Maloletka’s picture, Mariupol Maternity Hospital Airstrike, was named World Press Photo of the Year.
Taken on assignment for the Associated Press, the image shows Iryna Kalinina, a wounded pregnant woman aged 32, being carried on a stretcher, across debris from a maternity hospital in Mariupol, Ukraine, that was damaged during airstrikes.
The Story of the Year, was awarded to Mads Nissen for a series entitled The Price of Peace in Afghanistan.
The series depicts life in Afghanistan under the Taliban and a lack of international aid.
Unable to afford food for the family, the parents of Khalil Ahmad, 15, decided to sell his kidney for US$3,500.
The World Press Photo recognises the best photojournalism and documentary photography.
This year’s winners were chosen from more than 60,000 entries by 3,752 photographers from 127 countries.