Iryna Kalinina, a 32-year-old Ukrainian woman, was being carried on a stretcher from the maternity hospital in Mariupol after a Russian air raid. Her baby was stillborn and half an hour later Iryna passed away too. In the midst of that tragedy, which occurred in March 2022, was the Ukrainian war photojournalist Evgeniy Maloletka.

It was he who captured the misfortune in a single photo, and for that photo he is today awarded the prize World Press Photo to the ‘Photo of the Year’.

Not only Iryna appears on the scene, but also several members of the emergency services who tried to save the mother’s life in the middle of the bombing. When she found out that her baby had died she pleaded with the workers to kill her “now!”.

In the background of the image you can see how the destruction covers everything: destroyed trees and branches, a column of smoke and the skeleton of two buildings that have lost their windows due to the impact of the bombs that had fallen moments before.

Iryna Kalinina’s face describes fatigue, but above all the pain of the horror he had just survived this mother. Still with the belly of a pregnant woman, her black pants stained with blood, and lying on a stretcher supported by five men who run to another hospital, even closer to the front line, to try to save her life.

About the photographer

Evgeniy Maloletka, a war photographer, journalist and filmmaker from the Ukrainian city of Berdyansk (Zaporizhia), captured this tragic scene on March 9, 2022 in Mariupol, which fell under Russian control last May after months of siege.

He covers the war in Ukraine since 2014, after the annexation of Crimea, and has also done work on the protests of the Euromaidan movement, the protests in Belarus, the Nagorno-Karabakh war and the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic in Ukraine, collaborating with prestigious media such as the Associated Press, Al Jazeera, Der Spiegel and others.