Maha Nasser is a journalist, TV and radio presenter, and a social activist. Her reports, highlighting society and civil rights in Yemen, caused her persecution from the regime and its supporters, which forced her to leave the country in 2016. After spending the past two years in Malaysia unable to work as a journalist, she looks forward to continuing her work, to create awareness of the situation in her native Yemen, as well as reporting on Swedish culture.
In an interview, Nasser says:
- It is a difficult situation for us journalists in Yemen. Since the war broke out, the Houthi groups and the former regime have closed down all newsrooms and banned most news sites. They have persecuted and arrested many journalists, and a number of journalists have also been killed.
With a degree in Media from the University of Science and Technology in Taiz in Yemen, Maha Nasser has covered the local news in Taiz for several Yemeni newspapers such as Sana’a Times, AlJumhoria, Alshare.
Nasser worked as news and programme presenter with Yemen TV, Sana’a TV, and Radio Taiz. With Radio Taiz, Nasser worked as a radio programme presenter, co-presenting a daily show focusing on the local news from the city, as well as discussing issues such as terrorism, local governance and initiatives, and civil society activities in the city. Nasser was also a presenter for Sana’a TV for the TV show entitled Social Change in Yemen. The weekly show aimed at promoting social debate amongst Yemeni youth regarding certain social and political issues such as sexual harassment, drugs, street children, unemployment, terrorism, and public services such as education and health.
Nasser has been closely involved with the work of the Yemen Red Crescent Society (YRCS) since 2006. She gained experience in humanitarian programming, relief efforts, health projects, gender issues, as well as conflict-resolution work, and became the lead on first aid and media training projects with the YRCS.
For the Rafah Foundation for Development, Nasser took part in conducting and implementing media activities, social and community projects as well as working as a trainer for youth and awareness programmes. She also coordinated joint projects with other NGOs.
Nasser has taken part in many training sessions and civil society activities such as UNICEF’s follow-up report on destroyed schools in Taiz, training sessions about the role of media to promote integrity and transparency in anti-corruption, and a session about the role of media in community cohesion.