Join us at the Rio Theatre on Sunday, November 4 for the launch of a new investigative interview series from award-winning journalist Mohamed Fahmy. “Frontline POV” examines Islamic extremism and the de-radicalization of members and affiliates of Al Qaeda and ISIS. This series will bring Fahmy up-close and personal with people on the frontlines of today’s global affairs and the battle of ideologies—revealing stories that revolve around topical issues such as press freedom, counter-terrorism, and the refugee crisis.
The first forum will focus on examining the motivations of Islamic extremists and de-radicalization – and the route back – and will feature interviews with Dr. Theo Padnos (US journalist and former Al Qaeda
captive), Hanif Qadir (CEO of the Active Change Foundation in the UK, former Al Qaeda extremist), and via Skype, Tania Georgelas (US resident and activist who was previously married to the highest ranking US Isis Fighter.)
Sunday November 4, 2018
Doors 10:00 am | Event 11:00 am
Please note: This event will be recorded as part of a new video content series in development.
*Must be 19+ w/ID for bar service.
**Sorry, Rio Theatre Groupons and passes not accepted for this event.
About Mohamed Fahmy:
Mohamed Fahmy is an Egyptian-born Canadian award-winning journalist, war correspondent and author. Fahmy has worked extensively in the Middle East, North Africa, for CNN, BBC and Al Jazeera English.
He covered the Iraq War in 2003 for the Los Angeles Times and entered Iraq on the first day of the war from Kuwait. Upon completion of his one-year mission, he authored his first book, Baghdad Bound. Most recently, he covered the Arab Spring. In September 2013, he accepted a new post as the Al Jazeera English International Bureau Chief based in Egypt.
On 29 December 2013, he and two journalists working at Al Jazeera English were arrested by Egyptian authorities. On 23 June 2014, Fahmy was unjustly found guilty by a Cairo Criminal Court and sentenced to seven years of incarceration at the Tora Prison, a maximum-security prison.He renounced his Egyptian citizenship on 3 February 2015 to benefit from a presidential executive order allowing the
deportation of foreign prisoners. On 23 September 2015, Fahmy was pardoned and had his Egyptian citizenship restored months later by the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. Fahmy worked briefly as an adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia upon winning his freedom and returning to Vancouver, Canada where one of his first official interviews was at TEDx Vancouver. He remains a journalist in residence at the Global Reporting Center in Vancouver, and authored a book about his imprisonment in Egypt titled ‘The Marriott Cell: An Epic Journey from Cairo’s Scorpion
Prison to Freedom.’ The book was adapted into a screenplay written currently in pre-production.
About Hanif Qadir:
Hanif Qadir was a former member of Al Qaeda. He travelled to Afghanistan in 2002 be he quit after he was appalled by the crimes he witnessed being committed against civilians in the name of Islam and turned his back on the terrorist group. Upon returning to the UK he founded the Active Change Foundation to raise awareness against extremism and help prevent young people in danger of becoming radicalized.
As the CEO of the Active Change Foundation, an organization he co-founded in 2003 in East London, Hanif works hard to help young men and women who are in danger of becoming radicalized.
He is involved in advising and assisting senior policy makers in reforming key aspects of the Preventing/Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) in the United Kingdom and has worked closely with UK police authorities and research academics worldwide. He is the author of Preventing and Countering Extremism and Terrorist Recruitment: A Best Practice Guide.
About Theo Padnos:
Dr. Theo Padnos is an American journalist and author who was kidnapped for two years by Al Nusra Front, the former Al Qaeda affiliate in Syria. He received a doctorate in comparative literature and taught poetry to prisoners of a local jail in Vermont. He then relocated to Yemen and began his study of Islam before moving to Damascus, Syria, to enroll in an Islamic religious school.
In his book, titled Undercover Muslim, he highlights the topic of Islamic extremism. Theo continued traveling across the Middle East after he declared his allegiance to Islam in public. He started his career as a freelance journalist in 2012 and wrote for outlets such as the New Republic, The Huffington Post and the London Review of Books.
Theo was kidnapped in 2014 as he crossed the border from Turkey into Syria. He was subjected to torture and mock executions during his time in captivity and remains one of the few American hostages that survived the beheadings committed by terrorist groups in Syria.
About Tania Joya:
For over a decade, British born Tania Joya was married to the most senior American member Isis; John Georgelas. Their relationship and John’s commitment to the radical beliefs of Al Qaeda and Islamic state took Tania and her children through conflict zones in Egypt, Turkey, and Syria. She escaped with her American-born children from Syria via a human trafficker in September 2013. Using her vast experience inside Islamic extremist groups, Tania now works as an activist against the dangers of religious indoctrination and exploitation. Tania works with many organizations to counter the forces fueling violent extremism using expert social media engagement, advocacy, and civic engagement.