1995 Photo Contest, General News, 3rd prize

James Nachtwey

Magnum Photos for Time

01 July, 1994

Thousands of cholera victims in the refugee camps near Goma, Zaire, were buried anonymously in mass graves. Once the corpses had been deposited they were showered with lime in order to accelerate decomposition. In an attempt to escape from the civil war tearing their country apart, about a quarter of the Rwandan population crossed the border into Zaire, where hunger and disease awaited them. Hutu refugees set up vast encampments in the plains below the volcanoes outside the town of Goma. Within days, the refugee camps were hit by a cholera epidemic. Humanitarian organizations established cholera clinics to try stop the spread of the fatal disease.

About the photographer

James Nachtwey

Photographs of the Vietnam War and the American Civil Rights movement inspired him to become a photographer. While teaching himself photography, he worked as truck driver and as ...

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