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Oleksandr Solonenko

Oleksandr Solonenko has been a professional photographer since 2008.

This photograph depicts the Euromaidan protests in Kiev, Ukraine, which were fuelled by the percepton of widespread government corruption and human rights abuses. The Euromaidan protests began peacefully on November 21, 2013 in Maidan Nezalezhnosti (“Independence Square”). Subsequently the protests expanded, became violent, and eventually resulted in the 2014 Ukrainian revolution. This photograph was taken on January 22, 2014, shortly after the Ukrainian Parliament passed a set of laws infringing human rights, which led to many activists being kidnapped or jailed. In this image, protesters roll out burning tires in attempt to prevent themselves from being shot by government forces.

The Allard Prize Photography Competition jury selected this photograph as it depicts how government corruption and the passing of laws depriving basic human rights can force citizens to extreme action: in this case, a revolution.