Charlene RodriguesFrom my early years, I have been fascinated by cultures and complexities about the Middle East. I put this down to my ten years in Saudi Arabia, which had a profound impact on me and fueled a strong curiosity about the gulf region.

After graduating with a Masters in International Journalism, I travelled to Yemen. While studying classical Arabic, I started reporting for the UK media and international media on the political and economic collapse that plagued the country.

My written work and photography was published in The Guardian, Al Jazeera, Middle East Eye, The Economist, International Business Times, and others. While I was in Sanaa, I  was interviewed by  BBC, CTV, CBS radio, France 24 giving up-to-date eyewitness accounts of the fall of President Hadi and country’s decline into civil war.

To expose a different side to the complex political developments, I was one of the only freelance journalists to secure an interview with Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, the leader of the Shia rebel group in Yemen in October 2015, and this account was published as an exclusive in The Independent.  From child soldiers, organ trafficking to famines, I broke several stories for the front page of The Independent World . I also documented the oppression faced by local activists and my challenges of working as a journalist under a rebel-held government for The Guardian.

In the past few years, I have developed a strong interest in under reported regions of the world and through my work in Yemen I have able to focus on core issues of women empowerment in the middle east and Africa, unemployment, poverty and inequality, and the implications of unlawful drone killings on families and society.

I have a keen interest in technology, classical music and languages. I am multilingual, and speak fluent English, Hindi, Italian and conversational Arabic, Portuguese and French.



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