2005 Photo Contest, Portraits, 1st prize

Francesco Zizola

01 May, 2004

Lilian (23), was kidnapped from her village in Uganda by rebel fighters of the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) when she was 12 years old. After a week-long march across the border into Sudan, Lilian was given as a bush-wife to a rebel commander, who raped her that night. She bore her first child two years later, a son she named Oryema. Lilian stayed with the rebels for 11 years, and participated in fighting against the Sudan Liberation Army, which allegedly has the backing of the Ugandan government. Lilian eventually escaped with her son during an attack by the Ugandan army, and fled back across the border to a shelter for former girl soldiers. The Ugandan government has been unable to end insurgency by the LRA in the region, and rebels have killed or kidnapped many thousands of people.

About the photographer

Francesco Zizola

Born in 1962, since 1980's he has documented the world's major conflicts and their hidden crisis, focusing on the social and humanitarian issues that define life in the developin...

This image is collected in