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Burmese photographer Minzayar Oo to receive Martin Adler Prize 2017

Friday, 20 October 2017 Written by Rory Peck Trust

Minzayar will be honoured at the Rory Peck Awards in London on Monday 23rd October

Burmese freelance photographer Minzayar Oo will attend the Rory Peck Awards in London on Monday 23rd October to receive the Martin Adler Prize 2017, sponsored by Hexagon, which honours a local freelancer who has made a significant contribution to newsgathering.
 
At just 29 years old, Minzayar is one of Myanmar’s leading photographers - part of a new generation of local freelance journalists documenting the political, social and economic transition of their country.

Minzayar is unique among his peers for the dedication he has shown in telling Myanmar’s important and difficult stories, notably his long-term commitment to covering the plight of the Rohingya - a story now top of the international news agenda.  
 
He has been visiting Myanmar’s refugee camps since 2012, winning the trust of the Rohingya and photographing them with an intimacy that nobody else has come close to rivalling.  His Reunions
and Ransoms
story for Reuters
, shot inside the internet huts in the Thae Chaung village refugee camp, shows Rohingya families connecting over Skype on dusty laptops, with relatives and loved ones who have left for Thailand and Malaysia. It also reveals their vulnerability at the hands of human traffickers who exploit their precarious situation as members of one of the largest group of stateless people in the world.
 
His long-term documentary project, The Price of Jade, exposes, for the first time, the horrific social impact of Myanmar’s secretive, multi-billion dollar Jade industry in conflict-torn Kachin state and reveals the perilous lives of hundreds of thousands of young people who have migrated there to work as miners, hoping to find a shortcut to wealth.  
 
Minzayar's first international breakthrough came in 2012 when his image of Aung San Suu Kyi appeared on the front page of the International Herald Tribune on the day after the country's historic by-elections that saw her elected to parliament.
 
“It’s difficult for a local photographer to cover stories like these within Myanmar and bring them out to the wider world”, said Sarah Ward Lilley, Chair of the Rory Peck Trust whose Trustees selected Minzayar for the Prize. “We wanted to recognise that achievement and to celebrate Minzayar’s talent. He is still only 29 and already he has produced such an impressive body of work.”
 
Minzayar’s work has been published in TIME, The New York Times, The Guardian, The New Yorker, National Geographic, GEO, 6MOIS, La Republica and many other publications and has been exhibited in Myanmar and around the world, including photography festivals Rencontres d’Arles and Angkor Photo Festival.
 
Minzayar is represented by Panos Pictures and is the first photographer to receive the Martin Adler Prize.

Images: © Minzayar Oo/Panos Pictures 

For further information please contact Molly Clarke, Head of Communications, Rory Peck Trust, email: molly@rorypecktrust.org | tel: +44 (0) 203 219 7861.

The Martin Adler Prize, sponsored by Hexagon, honours a local freelancer who has made a significant contribution to newsgathering, either through a single story or body of work, but who is largely un-recognised by the international news media. It is a special prize, given by the Trustees of the Rory Peck Trust and will be announced at the Rory Peck Awards ceremony on Monday 23rd October, hosted by the BBC’s Lyse Doucet and NBC’s Katy Tur. The ceremony is the main fundraiser for the Rory Peck Trust, which supports freelance journalists and their families worldwide.
 
Tickets for the Rory Peck Awards are on sale here: 
 


 

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