Aleppo in ruins, Homs an apocalypse: Worse only Hiroshima and Nagasaki, maybe only Dresden, Kassel, Cologne at the end of World War II looked like some Syrian cities do in 2017. Among the ruins: Girls like Victoria who is at least alive and has returned with her brother and her parents to a house they can’t live in anymore.

Among the rubble: Children looking for firewood, rummaging through destroyed shops, looking at utter destruction, finding starving cats. How to start a new life here? Where to find a roof to sleep under? Attend which school? Hoping for what kind of help? How to survive the next winter? Nothing is over here. There is no peace here. No Marshall Plan in sight, and no end to the old regime.

German photo reporter Christian Werner, born in 1987 and a former student of Photojournalism and Documentary Photography at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts in Hanover went to Aleppo and Homs after they were recaptured – with the help of Russia and Iran – by the troops of Baschar al-Assad. Werner has worked for the agencies laif and Zeitenspiegel; his works were published, for example, in Der Spiegel, Die Zeit and the Washington Post. He was also one of the winners of the UNICEF Photo of the Year Awards 2014 with his photo series about the fate of the Yazidis in Iraq. One of Werner’s most comprehensive photo series was the one about the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean: another tragedy with no end in sight...

Curriculum Vitae: Christian Werner (Freelance Photographer)

UNICEF Foto des Jahres: Christian Werner

© Christian Werner

Christian Werner is a freelance multimedia/photojournalist based in Boitzum, Germany. Chris, born in 1987, studied from 2009 to 2014 photojournalism and documentary photography at the University of Hanover. He works as a freelance photojournalist and published his photos and stories, among others, in Der Spiegel, Die Zeit, TIME Magazine, The Washington Post and many more.

From 2012 -2016 Christian Werner was represented by the German reportage agency laif. In late 2016 Chris is represented by Zeitenspiegel. His photographic focus is the processing of social injustice, conflicts and geopolitical issues. His work has been awarded several times and frequently exhibited internationally. In 2015 Chris participated at the World Press Joop Swart Mastercalss in Amsterdam. 2016 Chris has been chosen in the 30 under 30 Europe Forbes List in the Media category. In late summer 2016 he begins working with MOAS (Migrant Offshore Aid Station).


More information on the competition and the UNICEF Photo of the Year 2017 reportages.

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Renowned photographers from all over the world take part in the contest. An independent jury decides upon the winner.

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