The War in Yemen: Political & Social Developments

08/12/2015 - 19:00
Three Speaker Panel Discussion
Khalili Lecture Theatre (KLT), SOAS University of London

The War in Yemen: Political and Social Developments

The British-Yemeni Society and the Royal Society for Asian Affairs invite you to a panel discussion on current developments in Yemen. The event will take place on Tuesday 8 December 2015 at 7:00pm in the Khalili Lecture Theatre at SOAS (Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG).

The event is open to the public.


Nawal al-Maghafi (Freelance Producer and Reporter)

Nawal is a Yemeni/ British journalist and filmmaker. She has been working as a world news producer for Reuters. Her work has featured at Channel 4, BBC Newsnight, BBC World, and BBC Arabic. She was one of the few journalists to enter Sa’adah and gain an exclusive interview with the Houthi movement leader, Mohammed Badreddine al-Houthi. Some of her more well-known documentaries include The President’s Man and his Revolutionary Son (2012) and the investigation of the journey of the hundreds of thousands of Ethiopian migrants that are being kidnapped and tortured in Yemen.


Baraa Shiban (Yemen’s National Dialogue Conference Member)

Baraa is a member of the Yemeni National Dialogue Conference, a body charged with negotiating solutions to Yemen’s challenges and, where necessary, revising its laws (2013-2014). He is also the Yemen project co-ordinator for the human rights organisation Reprieve. A prominent investigator of the US drones program, he has testified to a United States congressional hearing on the effects of drones on Yemen. Baraa is a Business Administration graduate and was involved with a number of civil society organisations in Yemen from 2006-2011. In 2011, he played a significant role in peaceful demonstrations against president ‘Ali ‘Abdullah Saleh, helping run a media centre in Sana’a’s Change Square. As a youth representative in the National Dialogue, he has engaged in political discussions and negotiations with the Houthi movement prior to the Saudi led coalition.

Dr Noel Brehony CMG (MENAS Associates)

Noel was Chairman of the British Yemeni Society from 2010 to 2015 and author of Yemen Divided: The Story of a Failed State in South Arabia (I.B. Tauris 2013). He is a former diplomat and businessman and is currently Chairman of both MENAS Associates and the Council for British Research in the Levant. He was a Research Associate at the London Middle East Institute from 2008 to 2011, and is a member of its Advisory Council. He is past President of BRISMES and past chairman of the Middle East Association. He co-edited Rebuilding Yemen: Political, Economic and Social Challenges (Gerlach, 2015). He is currently working on an edited volume under the title: Migration from Yemen: The Politics and Identity of the Hadhrami Diaspora (I.B. Tauris, 2016). 

Dr Natalie Roberts (Médecins Sans Frontières)

Since January 2012, Natalie has worked full-time with MSF in various emergencies relating to conflicts, natural disasters and refugee crises in the Philippines, Pakistan, Central African Republic, Ethiopia, and Eastern Ukraine. She worked extensively in Syria between 2012-13, including in Aleppo. Until September she was Emergency Coordinator for MSF in North Yemen, managing activities in Sa'ada and Amran. Natalie graduated in medicine from Cambridge and Imperial College London, and trained in surgery and emergency medicine before joining Médecins Sans Frontières. She holds a Diploma of Tropical Medicine, and in 2015-16 is studying for a Masters in Violence, Conflict and Development at SOAS, University of London.