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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2:59pm

Mon October 21, 2013
Middle East

Unrest Erupts In Egypt After Attack On Christian Wedding

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 8:10 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Sunday was supposed to be a day of joy in Egypt at the Church of the Virgin Mary in suburban Cairo. There were four weddings scheduled. But after a drive-by shooting ripped through the celebrations, there were four burials today instead. At least 18 other people were wounded in the attack. It was the latest act of violence in a country experiencing divisions and great crisis. From Cairo, NPR's Leila Fadel sent this report.

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10:58am

Fri October 18, 2013
Parallels

Egypt's Crackdown On Islamists Spreads To Mosques, Charities

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 8:09 pm

A physician collects medical equipment and medicines from the remains of the partially destroyed Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque compound hospital in Cairo on Aug. 15.
Khaled Desouki AFP/Getty Images

Mohammed is a teacher, and for the past 17 years, he has also worked with an Islamic charity in Cairo. But a little more than two weeks ago that charity was shut down.

Security forces raided its office, took everything and began searching for the head of the board of directors because he's connected to the Muslim Brotherhood — the Islamist group of ousted President Mohammed Morsi.

Mohammed, who asked that only his first name be used, fled.

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1:00am

Wed October 9, 2013
Parallels

Bound By Blood, Divided By Politics: Three Egyptian Sisters

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 6:44 pm

Egyptian women queue outside a polling station during voting on a disputed constitution drafted by Islamist supporters of then-President Mohammed Morsi, in Giza, Egypt, last December. In a country divided by a political crisis, families are not spared.
Nasser Nasser AP

Nagwa, Dina and May are sisters. All three are married, all three have children. All three had always been close — until now.

Egypt's political crisis is changing those relationships. Nagwa and May sympathize with the Muslim Brotherhood. Dina, on the other hand, supports the military, arguing that the generals are just keeping extremists at bay.

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1:56am

Fri September 27, 2013
NPR Story

Journalists In Egypt Face 'Unprecedented Pressures'

Originally published on Fri September 27, 2013 4:54 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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10:02am

Thu August 29, 2013
Parallels

In Egypt's Political Turmoil, Middle Ground Is The Loneliest

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 5:01 pm

The protesters who opposed Hosni Mubarak two years ago, like these demonstrators in Cario's Tahrir Square on Feb. 8, 2011, have been pushed to the sidelines in the current confrontation.
Emilio Morenatti AP

Egypt is quieter these days. Protests against the ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi have subsided for now. And the military-appointed interim government is firmly in charge.

Yet, Egypt remains deeply polarized. And the middle is a lonely place to be.

Some of the young revolutionaries who led the 2011 uprising against the regime of Hosni Mubarak feel they are back to square one, battling authoritarian forces on both sides.

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3:06am

Fri August 23, 2013
Middle East

Mubarak's Release From Prison Cuts Across Egypt's Divisions

Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 7:07 pm

Security forces and medics wheel a stretcher transporting former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak from a military helicopter into an ambulance at a Cairo military hospital after his release from prison Thursday.
AFP/Getty Images

In Egypt, members of the Muslim Brotherhood are trying to get supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi back into the streets.

But the military appears to be consolidating its power.

There were signs of Egypt's shifting fortunes on Thursday when former President Hosni Mubarak was flown from jail to house arrest in a hospital. A few dozen people celebrated outside the prison as Mubarak, 85, was ferried away by helicopter.

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5:55am

Sat August 17, 2013
Middle East

Despite Bloodshed, Many Egyptians Support Military

Originally published on Sun August 18, 2013 6:16 am

A pro-Morsi supporter stands with other demonstrators in Cairo's Abbassiya neighborhood on Friday.
Mohammed Abdel Moneim AFP/Getty Images

Egypt witnessed the bloodiest day in its modern history this week. More than 600 people were killed, most during a security crackdown on supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi.

And it isn't over. Dozens more have died since, some in citizen-on-citizen violence. A standoff is going on at a central Cairo mosque, and the nation is spiraling out of control.

Much of Egypt has little sympathy for Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood or their supporters.

'For The Good Of Egypt'

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5:09pm

Thu August 15, 2013
Parallels

Scene From A Cairo Mosque Turned Morgue

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:50 pm

A man walks among shrouded bodies at a Cairo mosque on Thursday. At the El-Iman mosque, more than 200 bodies were being prepared for burial, the victims killed in a crackdown on protesters by Egypt's military-backed government.
Khaled Desouki AFP/Getty Images

After the bloodshed, comes the grief.

A man weeps as he surveys row upon row of corpses. Some are completely burned. "They are all my brothers," he cries.

Nearby, men methodically break apart blocks of ice in two caskets inside this Cairo mosque. They then place them under the bodies to stop them from decomposing.

But still the sickly sweet smell of death hangs in the air.

Volunteers burn incense and spray air freshener to mask it, but that only adds to the stifling atmosphere.

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2:26pm

Tue July 30, 2013
Africa

Does Egypt's Crisis Signal The End Of Political Islam?

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 3:32 pm

We take a look at what the Muslim Brotherhood's fall from grace means for the future of religion and politics in Egypt. Was it tested, failed and now dead?

3:39am

Thu July 11, 2013
Middle East

With President Morsi Out, Gulf States Open Their Checkbooks

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 10:13 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

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3:34pm

Tue July 9, 2013
Political Crisis In Egypt

For Now At Least, Egypt's Police Are Seen As The Good Guys

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 5:15 pm

A member of Egypt's police special forces stands guard next to an armored vehicle on July 3, protecting a bridge between Cairo's Tahrir Square and Cairo University where Muslim Brotherhood supporters gathered.
Manu Brabo AP

Egypt has undergone profound change over the past 10 days. The military has overthrown an elected Islamist president and is back in control of the country amid deadly clashes between Islamists and the state security forces.

There's been another change as well: Egypt's police, long reviled by much of the population, have become unlikely heroes for opponents of the now-ousted President Mohammed Morsi.

During Egypt's 2011 uprising, revolutionaries fought pitched street battles with the police force, the protector of the autocratic regime.

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2:43pm

Thu July 4, 2013
Africa

In Post-Coup Egypt, Morsi Allies Feel Effects

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:38 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

Egypt has a new interim president.

ADLY MANSOUR: (Foreign language spoken)

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1:07am

Tue June 18, 2013
Parallels

Libyan Radio Station Promotes Democracy, One Rap At A Time

Originally published on Tue June 18, 2013 11:52 am

Libyan presenters work at the studio of Radio Zone in Tripoli, Libya, in 2012. The radio station's owners hope to teach a new generation about democracy.
Mahmud Turkia AFP/Getty Images

Many of the militia fighters who rose up and ousted former dictator Moammar Gadhafi in 2011 have refused to lay down their arms and are still challenging the post-revolutionary government.

Yet the militias are facing a challenge of their own. They now come under verbal attack on one of Libya's newest radio stations, Radio Zone.

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12:55am

Wed May 29, 2013
Parallels

After The War, A Bitter Feud Remains In Two Libyan Towns

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 7:04 pm

A destroyed home in Tawargha, south of Misrata, on June 5, 2012. Residents have not returned home for fear of death.
John W. Poole NPR

Little boys play soccer in the afternoon heat at a makeshift camp near Libya's capital Tripoli. Their homes, or what's left of them, are in Tawargha, a small town about 20 miles from the Mediterranean coast.

The town has been empty since August of 2011. Its residents fled in cars and on foot, under fire from rebel militiamen from the nearby town of Misrata.

The siege of Misrata was one of the bloodiest battles of the Libyan war. Forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi shelled Misrata relentlessly, killing hundreds.

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1:39pm

Thu May 16, 2013
Parallels

From The Heart Of Egypt's Revolt, The Pulse Of Artistic Life

Originally published on Thu May 16, 2013 6:34 pm

Egyptian folk singer Dina El Wedidi performs at Qasr El Nil Theater during the Downtown Cairo Arts Festival. Wedidi says efforts to revitalize venues like the Qasr El Nil are important because there aren't enough places for musicians of the post-revolution explosion to perform.
Mostafa Abdel Aty Courtesy of Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival

Egypt's capital, Cairo, is now synonymous with protests and sometimes violence. Late at night, the once-bustling downtown streets are largely empty these days. People worry about getting mugged or caught up in a mob.

But the recent Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival is an attempt to revitalize the area with music, art and culture in the old and forgotten venues of downtown Cairo, like the Qasr El Nil Theater.

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3:03am

Sat April 27, 2013
Middle East

Egyptian Activists: Our Religion Is None Of Your Business

Originally published on Sat April 27, 2013 6:17 pm

Egyptian Christians gather around four coffins during a funeral service at the Saint Mark Coptic cathedral in Cairo on April 7. Religious violence this month has killed three Muslims and at least six Christians.
Amr Nabil AP

Since Egypt's revolution began, tensions among Egypt's Muslims and Christians have only increased. Earlier this month, it once again turned deadly. Tit-for-tat killings left three Muslims and at least six Christians dead.

That and other religious violence is prompting a public debate about religious identity in Egypt. One group of young Egyptians wants to remove religious labels from national ID cards.

'Where The Trouble Starts'

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1:21am

Wed April 24, 2013
World

Egypt's Jon Stewart Says He Won't Back Down Amid Charges

Originally published on Wed April 24, 2013 6:19 pm

Egyptian satirist Bassem Youssef waves to his supporters as he enters Egypt's state prosecutor general's office in Cairo on March 31 to face charges of allegedly insulting Islam and the country's leader.
Amr Nabil AP

It's 9:30 p.m. on a Friday night, and Bassem Youssef's show is on TV screens at cafes throughout downtown Cairo.

It's the Egyptian political satirist's first show since he was summoned to the prosecutor general's office to answer questions about the jokes he makes on TV. After the interrogation, he was released on about $2,200 bail.

On this night, the show opens with a joke about Youssef himself.

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3:11am

Thu April 4, 2013
Middle East

As Egypt Negotiates IMF Loan, Food And Fuel Prices Soar

Originally published on Thu April 4, 2013 12:30 pm

An Egyptian woman carries a cooking gas canister in Cairo on Tuesday. The government just raised the price of gas as part of an energy package needed to satisfy the conditions of a $4.8 billion IMF loan. Opponents say some of the conditions disproportionately hurt the poor.
Khalil Hamra AP

Two years after the revolution, Egypt is in a deep economic crisis. It's running out of money to purchase crucial imports like wheat and fuel, both of which are subsidized by the government, and an infusion of cash is desperately needed.

While a delegation from the International Monetary Fund is in Cairo continuing negotiations on a $4.8 billion loan, Egyptians are strained by the rising costs of food — and the gas needed to cook it.

For Mosaad el Dabe, it's a disaster.

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12:44pm

Mon March 25, 2013
Africa

Islamists Say They Are Filling Vacuum Left By Egyptian State

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 3:59 pm

Egyptian men and boys pray at a mosque in Assiut, southern Egypt, that serves as the headquarters for Gamaa al-Islamiya, a group that once waged a bloody insurgency, attacking police and Christians in a campaign to create an Islamic state. Now the Islamist group says it's determined to ensure law and order in the area.
Nariman El-Mofty AP

In the lush Nile Valley city of Assiut, the police went on strike earlier this month, along with thousands of other cops across the country. They demanded the ouster of the minister of interior, and more guns and equipment to deal with anti-government protests.

A group of hard-line Islamists then stunned the city, which is south of Cairo, by promising to handle security during the strike. The next day, the policemen were back at work.

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1:02am

Thu March 7, 2013
Africa

In Post-Revolution Egypt, Fears Of Police Abuse Deepening

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 8:29 am

An Egyptian military police officer argues with protesters during a demonstration on June 14, 2012, outside the Supreme Constitutional Court in Cairo.
Marwan Naamani AFP/Getty Images

Egypt's police force was the underpinning of former President Hosni Mubarak's iron-fisted regime, and it quickly became the enemy of Egypt's 2011 revolution.

Yet there has been little to no reform of the police force to date. Human rights groups say the police have begun to act like armed gangs, laying down collective punishment in restive areas across the country. But the police say they are the victims, under constant attack by anti-government protesters.

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