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Mainichi photographer wins award for photos of Kumamoto quake

The "Miraculous rescue" photo that won the 2016 Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association Award. (Mainichi)

Mainichi Shimbun photographer Daisuke Wada has won the 2016 Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association Award for a series of photos of the April 2016 Kumamoto Earthquake, the association announced.

    Wada, who belongs to the Photo Department of the national daily's Kyushu Head Office in Fukuoka, won the award in the editorial category.

    This is the first Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association Award in the editorial category for the Mainichi Shimbun in two years and its 28th overall -- the largest number in the category of all news organizations in Japan.

    The first major temblor in the Kumamoto quake struck at 9:26 p.m. on April 14. Wada rushed to the Kumamoto Prefecture town of Mashiki where the quake registered 7 on the 7-point Japanese intensity scale shortly after midnight and took photos of the devastating damage caused by the disaster to the town.

    One of the photos showing workers holding a baby they rescued from a collapsed house on April 15 about six hours after the temblor, titled, "Miraculous rescue," was dispatched globally.

    The association highly appreciated the photos taken by Wada.

    "A photo of rescue work has given hope to readers. A photo showing a woman crying after confirming the body of her daughter, with her husband by her side, conveyed the shock of the massive disaster," the association said as it commented on Wada's works. "The photographer faced up to the sadness of those who suffered damage from the disaster and clearly captured their expressions, conveying the reality of the Kumamoto Earthquake to readers."

    Three other staffers and teams at public broadcaster NHK, Fuji TV and the Iwate Nippo regional daily also won the 2016 Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association Award in the editorial division.

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