Sophie Claudet is a print and television journalist specialized in Middle East affairs. She is currently based is Paris where she serves as Al-Monitor Europe and Middle East correspondent as well as video editor-in-chief. She often travels to the region to cover major stories such as the Egyptian elections. From 1998 until 2005, she worked for Agence France-Presse English service in the Palestinian Territories/Israel and Egypt. During that time, she also covered Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon. In 2005, Ms. Claudet joined Al Jazeera English in Qatar where she helped launch the channel while also contributing to its website. From 2006-2009, she was Senior International Correspondent with France 24 and covered breaking stories such as the war in Darfur, Israel's war on Gaza and Iran's election. She then co-authored and produced an international news magazine in France. From June 2011 until she joined Al-Monitor, she worked on several films dealing with the Middle East. She regularly trains journalists in emerging democracies such as Tunisia. Ms. Claudet speaks French, English and Arabic. She holds an MA from the Johns Hopkins University (SAIS) in Middle East studies and Economics.
Annick Cojean of Le Monde describes former Libyan ruler Moammar Gadhafi's use of rape in her new book, “Les Proies, Dans le Harem de Kadhafi" ("The Prey, Inside Gadhafi’s Harem"), which will be available in Arabic this month and English next year.
Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi told Sophie Claudet in an interview that renewed protests against the Iranian government are imminent and that the opposition is working behind the scenes even if the state's crackdown has kept it off the streets. She also gave her views on Iran’s nuclear program, Iranian politics, sanctions and the Arab revolutions.
Women played a central role in overthrowing dictatorships during the Arab Spring but are also prime targets of radical Islamists attempting to hijack the movement, said Melanne Verveer, US envoy for global women's issues. She spoke to Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet on the sidelines of the Women's Forum in Deauville, France.
Leila Yavari, an Iranian-American former model turned fashion director, spoke with Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet about her career, which began during a Berkeley Ph.D. program; the art scene in Iran; bridging the Eastern and Western fashion worlds and drawing inspiration from her Persian roots.
Inspired by a book about Golda Meir's alleged affair with an Arab banker, Yolande Zauberman and Selim Nassib asked Tel Aviv Jews a daring question: Would you have sex with an Arab? The couple reversed the question for Israeli Arabs. Sophie Claudet talks with the filmmakers about politics, mixed-race kids and the prospect of peace.
Qatar has set up a fund to support enterprises in France’s underdeveloped areas, a move some speculate aims to interfere in French politics or propagate Qatar’s orthodox brand of Islam. Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet met with Qatar's ambassador to discuss France, the rise of Islamism in Arab Spring countries, Syria and Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
Hundreds of Tunisians protested in support of a woman who was allegedly raped by two policemen last month. The crowd gathered in Tunis, where the alleged raped victim was summoned by a judge. They denounced Tunisia’s worsening rights record, slamming the Islamist-led government for not doing enough to protect women.
A Tunisian woman who alleges she was raped earlier this month by two policemen now stands accused of indecency, says her lawyer. Women's groups and human rights associations are planning to stage a large protest, reports Sophie Claudet for Al-Monitor.
Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki speaks to Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet just days after the US embassy in Tunis was stormed by Salafists. Marzouki said more could have been done to prevent the attack. He also acknowledged the rise and danger of Salafists, but said that force will not solve the problem of radical Islam.
The Rafah border crossing was closed Aug. 5 after an attack on an Egyptian security site in the Sinai peninsula. Gazaans were upset over the temporary closure since they had pinned high hopes on the regime change in Egypt. Sophie Claudet and Saleh Jadallah write for Al-Monitor.
On the tenth anniverary of the the Israeli West Bank wall, both the United Nations and the leading Israeli rights NGO B'Tselem, estimate that once completed, only 15% of the barrier will actually be on the Green Line while 85% will encroach into the West Bank. Listen to Al-Monitor’s interview with B'Tselem spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli.
Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet sat down with Tawakul Karman, the 2011 Nobel Prize Peace winner who became the face of Yemen’s Arab Spring, at Brookings’ US-Islamic World Forum in Doha. The passionate yet remarkably humble 33-year-old journalist and activist spoke of her hopes for her country and the revolution.
Now that Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi and Mubarak’s former prime minister, Ahmed Shafiq, are officially going to the next round of Egypt's presidential elections, analysts are looking at possible outcomes and their effects. Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet talks to Egyptian observers about what the new Egypt will look like.
Official results in Egypt's first free presidential election are expected May 29. But Sophie Claudet writes that according to unofficial tallies, with 90 percent of the vote counted so far, the Muslim Brotherhood candidate, Mohammad Morsi, is leading and will compete in a June run-off against Ahmad Shafiq, currently second, or Hamdeen Sabahi.
Despite the high turnout, the long lines stayed generally calm and organized on the second day of the Egyptian presidential. Although former prime minister and candidate Ahmed Shafiq was pelted with shoes and stones at a polling station Wednesday, disruptions remained minimal for such a charged event.
Egyptian academic Zeinab Abul-Magd says the upcoming presidential election will end the millitary's interim rule as expected. But in an interview with Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet, Ms. Abul-Magd says the army will still control the country’s economy and politics. "The revolution is not over," she says. "The president won’t last."
Mona Makram-Ebeid, a former member of the Egyptian parliament, belongs to Egypt’s 10 million-strong Coptic minority. She supports one of the front-runners for the presidency, Amr Moussa, and tells Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet in an interview that she fears an Islamist win "not only for the Copts, but for the liberals, the seculars, for everybody."
Outraged by mass arrests of activists, Ahmed Sabry joined their numbers — and was himself arrested, Sophie Claudet reports. He will appear before a military court like some 12,000 civilians since the revolution began, but hasn't lost hope. Military trials for civilians have become routine in Egypt, but most presidential hopefuls promise to suspend them.
February 17 was the first anniversary of the revolution that ousted Gaddafi. Libya is far from stable, with rampant violence and an economy crippled by corruption. Patrick Haimzadeh, a former French diplomat in Tripoli and the author of Inside Gaddafi’s Libya, spoke to Al Monitor’s Sophie Claudet.
The UN-backed independent Commission of Inquiry on Syria released a report Thursday accusing Syrian armed and security forces of crimes against humanity. The report, documenting human rights violations since the beginning of the Syria uprising in March 2011, also accused armed opposition groups of serious violations. Al Monitor interviewed the panel’s chairman, Paulo Sergio Pinheiro, about the report.
As hundreds of Palestinians jailed in Israel go on hunger strike to mark "Prisoners' Day" on April 17, Al-Monitor talks to Mustafa Barghouti, an MP, the leader of Al-Mubadara and a long-time advocate of civil resistance about the effectiveness of the non-violent movement. Are boycotts working? Will Hamas renounce the armed struggle? And is a two-state solution possible?
Al-Monitor Europe and Middle East correspondent Sophie Claudet spoke with Leila Benali, director for Middle and North Africa with IHS CERA. Ms. Benali’s expertise includes advising government and international companies on energy policies, master plans and strategic investments.
An interview with Egyptian journalist and analyst Hisham Kassem on Egypt’s troubled political scene. Kassem spoke to Al-Monitor's Sophie Claudet about the candidacies of former intelligence chief Omar Suleiman and the two Muslim Brotherhood nominees, and about the implications of the constituent assembly's suspension.
Egyptian protestors filled Tahrir Square again today, April 20, to keep their revolution going. A recent decision by the election commission to ban key candidates from the upcoming elections has sparked outrage and fear that the military is trying to cling to power. Al-Monitor talks to the protesters.
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