Leila Fadel

Leila Fadel is NPR's international correspondent based in Cairo.

Before joining NPR, she covered the Middle East for The Washington Post. In her role as Cairo Bureau Chief she reported on a wave of revolts and their aftermaths in Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, and Syria.

Prior to her position as Cairo Bureau Chief for the Post, she covered the Iraq war for nearly five years with Knight Ridder, McClatchy Newspapers and later the Washington Post. Her foreign coverage of the devastating human toll of the Iraq war earned her the George. R. Polk award in 2007.

Leila Fadel is a Lebanese-American journalist who speaks conversational Arabic and was raised in Saudi Arabia and Lebanon.

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Parallels
1:13 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

Gas In Egypt Is 78 Percent More Expensive Now Than Last Week

Egyptians gather at a petrol station in Cairo as the government drastically raised fuel prices to tackle a bloated subsidy system on July 5.
Mahmoud Khaled AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 1:51 pm

It's 2 p.m. on a hot day in Cairo and cars are lined up for blocks at this gas station in the east of the capital. People are waiting to fill their cars with the cheapest gas available — which is 78 percent more expensive than it was last week.

Ali Fayoumi yells from his window.

"I've been waiting for an hour and a half," he fumes. "Even the cheapest gas is too expensive. Everything is expensive, food, drink, everything."

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Africa
12:58 pm
Sat July 5, 2014

On The Shores Of Tripoli, A Beach Party Libyans Need

Originally published on Sun July 6, 2014 5:27 pm

The beach bums of Tripoli say that no matter who's in charge of Libya, they'll still be at the beach. Faisal Ali Kabir was here the night that former dictator Moammar Ghadafi was ousted, and Kabir remains, renting equipment to tourists, even as things around him change. NPR's Leila Fadel sends this postcard from Tripoli.

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Parallels
4:10 am
Sat June 28, 2014

A Rogue Libyan General Tries To Impose Order With An Iron Fist

Libya's Gen. Khalifa Hifter speaks at a news conference in Abyar, a small town to the east of Benghazi, on May 31. Hifter, a former military officer in Moammar Gadhafi's army, has has launched a self-declared campaign against Muslim extremists. This has won him both supporters and enemies.
Esam Omran Al-Fetori Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Sat June 28, 2014 11:43 am

No one is safe in Libya these days. Judges, activists, human rights defenders and former officers in Moammar's Gadhafi's army are being silenced with bullets and knives.

There are no formal security forces, weapons remain unsecured and the economy is foundering because rebels seized oil ports in the east.

For all these reasons, a rogue general with a checkered past has found support in large swaths of the country as he vows to fight what he calls terrorist groups.

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Africa
3:44 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Remembering Salwa Bugaighis, The Libyan Advocate Who Took On Ghadafi

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 6:10 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. Now, sobering news out of Libya - a prominent rights activist was shot and stabbed to death in her home last night. Salwa Bugaighis was a lawyer from Benghazi who had opposed former dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Today, U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice issued a statement lauding her courage and leadership. NPR's Leila Fadel had visited Bugaighis just recently, and has this report.

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Middle East
3:07 pm
Mon June 23, 2014

Guilty Verdicts Claim 3 More Reporters, As Egyptian Courts Roll On

Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 7:07 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's a case that's drawn international condemnation. Today, an Egyptian court sentenced two journalists to seven years in jail, and a third to 10 years. They all work for the Al Jazeera English news network and were convicted of being or aiding terrorists and tarnishing Egypt's image. No evidence of their alleged crimes were present - was presented in court. NPR's Leila Fadel has more.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Arabic spoken).

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Middle East
4:22 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Egyptian Court Sentences Al Jazeera Reporters To Prison

Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 10:11 am

Two journalists in Cairo got seven years in prison and third received 10 years. Egypt's government accused them of helping the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Parallels
4:42 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Saddam's Ex-Officer: We've Played Key Role In Helping Militants

Kurdish peshmerga forces look at a checkpoint held by militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria in Iraq's second city, Mosul, on Monday.
Karim Sahib AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 2:00 pm

As they steamrolled across northern Iraq, Sunni militants had important help from an old power in the country — former members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party and his army.

One retired air force colonel said he is a member of a newly formed military council overseeing Mosul, the large city captured last week by ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, and its allies from Sunni Arab armed factions.

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Parallels
11:28 am
Tue June 17, 2014

For Fleeing Iraqis, Kurdish Areas Are The Safe Zone

Families arrive at a checkpoint next to a temporary displacement camp on Friday in Kalak, in northern Iraq. Thousands of people have fled Iraq's second-largest city, Mosul, after it was overrun by Sunni militants.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 7:22 pm

At a checkpoint to enter the semi-autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq, families wait for their cars to be searched and for permission to enter. Inside this region, they believe they will be safe.

But these people who flee to Kurdish cities have the money to stay in hotels or rented apartments or have family to shelter them.

The less fortunate stay behind in a small camp near the checkpoint. It's one of four the Kurdish Regional Government is setting up.

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Iraq
3:07 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Calm Or Violent Chaos, Life Under ISIS Depends On The City

Demonstrators chant in support of the group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria as they wave the group's flag in front of the provincial government headquarters in Mosul, Iraq, on Monday, after the Sunni militants captured Tal Afar, another northern Iraqi town.
STR AP

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 8:20 pm

People in northern Iraq are getting their first taste of life under ISIS — the militant group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria that captured the large Iraqi city of Mosul last week with shocking speed.

The Sunni extremist group holds much of the mainly Sunni areas of northern and western Iraq.

Over the weekend it launched a bloody takeover of Tal Afar, an ethnically and religiously mixed Iraqi city near the Syrian border.

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Africa
3:06 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

One Week A Prime Minister: The Short Story Of Libya's Former Leader

New Libyan Prime Minister Ahmed Maiteg meets with his ministers for the first time, on June 2 in Tripoli. A week later, he was out of office.
Mahmud Turkia AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 9:46 pm

In Libya, you never know from one week to the next who's going to be prime minister. And when I met with the man in the job last week, it was clear no one is really in charge.

Ahmed Maiteg had only been prime minister a couple of days. He took office under the apparent protection of a militia that supports him, even as another man still claimed the job.

Maiteg, a 41-year-old businessman, was so new in the building that his staff was getting lost.

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Africa
5:08 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Political Chaos Reins 3 Years After Moammar Gadhaf'si Ouster

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 11:36 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. We are reminded this morning of how difficult the transitions have been in the countries of the Arab Spring. Egypt has had a coup. Serious bloody civil war carries on. And in Libya, two men now claim to be the rightful prime minister. One is a businessman elected by parliament earlier this month with the backing of Islamists.

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Parallels
1:58 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

No Surprise Here: Sisi Rolls To Victory In Egypt's Election

Less than a year after a coup, Egypt's Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has won the country's presidential election with more than 90 percent of the vote. Election monitors widely criticized the way the election campaign was handled.
Jim Watson AP

Originally published on Sat May 31, 2014 4:58 am

It was never in doubt, but now it's official. Ex-military chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi will be Egypt's president after nearly a year of being the nation's de facto leader.

He won by a landslide with more than 93 percent of the vote, according to a preliminary results. His victory was so sweeping that his lone opponent, Hamdeen Sabbahy, came in third with just 3 percent of the vote. People who voided their ballots in protest outnumbered those who voted for Sabbahy.

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Middle East
3:17 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Egyptian Media Encourages Voters To Get To Polls — Or Else

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 6:58 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, BYLINE: This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. Egyptian authorities added a third day of voting tomorrow in the country's presidential election. Backers of candidate Abdel Fattah al-Sisi are worried about underwhelming voter turnout. Sisi is the former military chief who led the popular coup against Egypt's last elected president. Sisi is almost certain to win, but his legitimacy could rely on turnout. NPR's Leila Fadel reports.

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Middle East
3:59 pm
Mon May 26, 2014

Voting Begins For Egypt's Next President

Originally published on Mon May 26, 2014 4:43 pm

Former military chief Abdel Fattah el-Sissi is expected to emerge victorious from Egypt's two-day polling, which began Monday. But the country remains divided.

Middle East
4:06 am
Mon May 26, 2014

Egyptians Vote Monday And Tuesday For Next President

Originally published on Mon May 26, 2014 6:23 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And so as Leila just told us, Egyptians appear ready to elect a military man - which in a way seems amazing considering the images we remember from three years ago. At that point, a military dictator, Hosni Mubarak, was removed from power. At that time, it was NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro in Cairo. She was witnessing all of the celebration.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

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