Zamira Eshanova, 2002 winner
Zamira Eshanova took exceptional risks to ensure her listeners were given accurate, up-to-date news about Uzbekistan and neighboring Afghanistan after the events of September 11, 2001.
“Zamira produced extraordinary reporting from the front lines of thewar on terrorism and on behalf of democracy and human rights conditions,” said Thomas A. Dine, RFE/RL’s president.
She covered stories such as developments at military bases around the border city of Termez, the secret movement of U.S. troops into Uzbekistan and the arrival of humanitarian aid in Northern Afghanistan. Several times Zamira encountered belligerent soldiers who threatened to shoot her. In Afghanistan, she became a Taliban target. Through it all, Zamira coped with uncooperative Uzbek authorities and their disdain for independent journalists, particularly women.