Freelance for Getty Images
"Between Life and War: The Struggles of Afghan Women"
FAIZABAD, AFGHANISTAN -JUNE 2 : Bibi Saiba, 25, suffers through hours of prolonged labor pains with her mother Bibi Jan (L) at her side at the Badakhshan Provincial hospital June 2, 2011, in Faizabad, Badakshan. Bibi Saiba was told that she would have to get cesarean section operation because the heart rate of the baby was too high, three hours later her husband arrived to give permission. Crises put pregnant women at greater risk due to sudden loss of medical support, trauma, malnutrition, disease and exposure to violence. According to UNICEF, 52 babies out of every 1,000 die within two weeks of birth and 134 die before their first birthday. While 1 in 8 women in Afghanistan die during pregnancy or childbirth making it the worst place in the world to be a mother. Many mothers are having children too young along with diet, and extreme poverty they face huge challenges having a healthy pregnancy. Afghan women also deal with vitamin D deficiency from staying indoors and being covered up. In the rural parts of the country, in remote areas Afghan women deliver with no skilled help because women cannot leave home without a male and there aren't enough midwives to help every mother in need given Afghanistan's poor infrastructure.
(Photo by Paula Bronstein /Getty Images)