Foreign Policy and Andrew Quilty Win George Polk Award in Journalism For Photography


News Story from: 2/16/16

February 16, 2016 – Washington, D.C. – Yesterday, Long Island University announced the winners of the 67th annual George Polk Awards in Journalism. Among the recipients is FP contributor and photojournalist Andrew Quilty, who is being recognized for his photography in “The Man On the Operating Table,” part three of a series revealing the devastation and impact of the airstrikes that destroyed the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan.

Foreign Policy is pleased to recognize and celebrate Andrew’s exceptional and intrepid reporting, and for exposing the unforgettable destruction that killed 42 patients and hospital workers. Not only do the photographs offer a brutal and haunting window into a great tragedy, but they represent the first published evidence of the damage to the hospital, forming a record for future litigation and reparations. The first and second parts of the series, “Inside the MSF Hospital in Kunduz,” and “MSF Hospital Survivors Recount a Night of Horror” document the hour-long attack with interviews from Afghan survivors and officials in Washington. Part three, for which Quilty is receiving the George Polk award, adds a deep and emotional resonance by profiling one particular victim killed in the attack, Baynazar Mohammad Nazar. For this piece Quilty made the dangerous trip back to Kunduz to meet this man’s family and visit his grave.

The administrators of the Polk Awards commented on Andrew’s reporting, saying “Quilty’s work is in the highest tradition of journalism: he rushed to the scene of the bombing, took photos that captured the indiscriminate horror of it and then spent time and effort to bring the victim to life in powerful images.”

David Rothkopf, The FP Group’s CEO and editor, said of this high honor, “This award not only represents the courage and bravery from Andrew for reporting on this significant event, but also represents FP as a news organization. This further justifies what FP stands for and strives to do every day – bringing world-class journalism to our readers across the globe.”

As a freelance photojournalist based in Kabul since late 2013, Quilty has relentlessly pursued complex and important stories in a country that — after some 14 years of war — may have receded from the world’s front pages, but is no less dangerous or critical. Quilty is one of the few journalists left in the country offering testament to the disruption this war has had, and still has, on the human condition.

If you would like to speak with Andrew or the editors from Foreign Policy staff, please contact Maria Ory ( or 202-728-7318)

To read more about the Polk Awards and the other winners, please click here.