Photographer Naim Nadir, from Kabul, has won the second edition of the Shah Marai Award for his series of black-and-white portraits of men that reflects "the spirit of the Afghan people in all its ethnic diversity," AFP reports.
The award, entitled “My Afghanistan”, was launched in honor of Shah Marai, chief photographer of Agence France-Presse's Kabul bureau, who was killed in a suicide attack on April 30, 2018.
TOLOnews reporter Yar Mohammad Tokhi also lost his life in the same attack.
AFP report says that for the second year running, Afghan photographers were invited to portray the reality their people face "away from the tragic images of violence."
"I tried to isolate the subject's eyes, letting their look and expression tell their story," said Nadir as quoted by AFP.
Naim Nadir, born in 1965, said he wanted his series, which is entitled 'The Afghan Spirit,' to showcase national unity by portraying all the main ethnic groups in Afghanistan: Pashtuns, Tajiks, Hazaras, Uzbeks and 10 or so smaller ones, according to AFP.
The AFP report says that the second prize was awarded to Mohammad Ismail, a photographer at the Reuters news agency born in 1979, for a series of 15 pictures of the bird market in Kabul where "Afghans weighed down by decades of war and struggle find a little comfort and distraction."
Third prize went to 34-year-old Mohammad Aref Karimi, an AFP stringer in the western Afghan city of Herat, for his series of images portraying mainly women and children, which he said demonstrate that "hope for a good life and finding moments of joy between war and life never left the Afghan people, said the AFP report.
The three prize winners were chosen from 39 entries by a jury of six people from the world of photography, according to AFP. The winners will be presented with the awards at a ceremony in Paris at a date yet to be determined, given the current pandemic.