Industry: Culture and society
Designation: Writer, activist
Country: US (Mauritania)
The son of a mauritanian diplomat, Nassser Wedaddy sought asylum in the US in 1999 after becoming involved in the country’s opposition movement. He has been a long-term activist against slavery in Mauritania, one of the few countries in which the practice continues. He has organised conferences for young activists in the Middle East, and has written for some of the world’s top newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times.
Wedaddy came to particular prominence during the ‘Arab Spring’ revolutions, during which he was seen as one of the most prominent cyber activists, collating information and distributing it to a small but influential group of policymakers and journalists. He was ranked as one of the top four most influential Twitter users of the uprisings. Weddady has worked for the American Islamic Conference as director civil rights outreach, and speaks five languages. He has also advised agencies such as the FBI on radicalisation.