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Pictures of the year: National Geographic's most stunning images from 2019

Jimmy Nsubuga

National Geographic has released a gallery of its images of the year, which include wolves feasting on an animal corpse, a free solo climber hanging perilously off a cliff and an orphaned giraffe hugging a tribesman.

The TV network meticulously searched through 2 million pictures, from 106 photographers and 121 stories, in order to create a final list that can be viewed here.

Other incredible images include a snap of a member of a Zimbabwean all-female anti-poaching unit called the Akashinga and an image showing a male elephant having a snack in Mozambique.

National Geographic director of visuals and immersive experiences Whitney Johnson had the hard task of choosing the finalists.

She praised her photo editors for helping her choose the 100 images that made it into the gallery.

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Ms Johnson was a big fan of the giraffe picture from photographer Ami Vitale, saying: “The image that speaks most to me is that of an orphaned young giraffe, its long neck draped over its human caregiver in what looks to be a loving hug. 

“The giraffe now runs free with a wild herd. 

“When exploring these pictures, we all might hear from our own internal photo editor, the voice inside us that tells us to pause, asking us to take a closer look.”