“Being a woman … you never represent a threat. You can ask much more than if you are a man without looking disrespectful.”

French photojournalist Veronique de Viguerie discusses some of her iconic work on the pirates of Somalia and what it is like working as a female photojournalist in Muslim countries – including photographing the Taliban in Afghanistan.

About Veronique de Viguerie
Veronique de Viguerie (born 1978) is a French photographer based in Paris. Having completed a master’s degree in law, she travelled to England to study photojournalism. She spent 3 years living and working in Afghanistan, and since 2006 has been covering stories around the world, including in Iraq, Lebanon, Somalia, India, Bangladesh, Israel, Kashmir, Cameroon, Algeria, Guatemala, etc. She bravely takes on these challenging assignments and personal projects in some of the most dangerous places on the planet, often working with her French journalist friend and colleague Manon Querouil.

Veronique’s work is regularly published in Newsweek, the New York Times, Stern, Paris Match, GEO, Figaro magazine, Marie Claire, The Guardian, La Repubblica, and has been printed in countless other titles.

In 2006 she won the Canon prize for the Female Photojournalist of the Year, the Lagardere Grant for Young Talent, and released her first book about Afghanistan: “Regards Croises”, published by Hachette.

In summer 2008 Veronique shot a cover story for Paris Match in Afghanistan attracting international attention, on a group of Taliban militants who had ambushed and killed French troops. She followed that up a few months later with a feature on the pirates in Somalia, completed just as the topic began to make the headlines around the world. The completed pirate project has subsequently been published in over 40 titles around the world, in over 20 countries.

Since then her work has included coverage of oil piracy in Nigeria, social issues in Afghanistan, women’s rights group FEMEN, the hunt for the LRA and the Great Lakes region of Africa (for which HBO featured her for an episode of their series ‘Witness’), mass grave forensic work in Abkhazia, and recently landmines in the Balkans.

In 2010, she won the prize for Best War Reportage at the Bayeux-Calvados Festival for War Correspondents, and in 2011 she had her second book published in collaboration with French journalist Manon Querouil, with whom she frequently collaborates, called “Carnets de Reportage du XXIe Siecle”, a travelogue of her many trips abroad as a photojournalist.

Explore more of Veronique’s work on Getty Images Reportage