010511: Penny Sukhraj, pictured here with husband Anton Hammerl, says not being able to hear her husband’s voice is ‘excruciating’.

New York - Renowned photographers will sell signed prints at an auction hosted by US television news mainstay Christiane Amanpour to raise funds for the family of Anton Hammerl, a South African photojournalist killed in Libya.

The Friends of Anton auction at Christie's in New York on May 15 aims to benefit the slain photographer's three children, organisers said.

Hammerl was killed last year during a freelance assignment to cover the violent overthrow of longtime Libyan strongman Muammar Gadaffi.

For 44 days, Gadaffi officials at the time said Hammerl was alive. "The truth is he was left to die in the desert. A campaign is currently under way to locate and recover his remains," the Friends of Anton group said.

The auction will offer signed prints by photographers including Sebastiao Salgado, Tim Hetherington, Yuri Kozyrev, Larry Fink, Ron Haviv, Joao Silva, and Samuel Aranda. Agence France-Presse is also contributing four photo prints to the auction.

"The upcoming Friends of Anton auction at Christie's is a milestone in contemporary photojournalism," said New York-based collector Alan L Paris.

"The contributors are top notch, the photos are of the highest quality, the material is fresh to the marketplace, and it is all for a very good cause." - Sapa-AFP