German Photographer Captures Powerful Pictures Of Women Who Escaped Boko Haram

German Photographer Captures Powerful Pictures Of Women Who Escaped Boko Haram

Andy Spyra is a German photographer and photojournalist known for his mostly held black and white compelling pictures from crisis region.


Sprya has been documenting the return of abducted women in Nigeria and their difficult reintroduction to society. He travelled to Yola in July and photographed women who had survived the brutality and torture of the Islamic militant group.

“I was moved by the strength of the women … you would sometimes just listen to their stories and be overwhelmed by it, what they would tell you,” Spyra said.

The resulting photo series is an ode to the victims, their forgotten odysseys, their loss of childhood and the difficult road ahead.

Hajar Adamu spent three weeks in captivity. She is one of the dozens of the survivors who posed for photographer Andy Spyra.


Saratu Zakariya spent seven months as a prisoner of Boko Haram. She was a Christian but was forced to learn Quran and was threatened with death if she didn’t obey and marry a Boko Haram fighter. She was severely whipped when she refused. She finally escaped during an evening prayer when the fighters went to a mosque.


Hajaru Buba’s child was the result of Boko Haram rape, Spyra said.


Ladi Idrisa, who is a Muslim, was a prisoner for four months. She is one of the many women in these photos.


Amina Adamu escaped after four months of captivity.


Halima Saleh was a prisoner for four months. Spyra said he was impressed by the strong presence and confidence of these women.


Laraba Bitrus was working in a shop when Boko Haram overran the town of Gwoza, in northeastern Nigeria. Laraba was held captive for 11 days before she fled & had to witness her uncle’s head sawed off.


Zainab Musa poses for a portrait.


Tani Bitrus’s husband was executed while she was detained along with 50 other women in Gwoza.


Jara Ahmadu was held for over a week


Hauwa Isa was a prisoner for eight months.


Mary John Ibrahim was working in a hospital when Boko Haram burned the area down.


Salamatu Ibrahim, who poses for a portrait here, was in captivity for five months.


Fadi Muhammadu spent a month and a half in captivity.


Fabi Buba was held for a month.



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