By Anil Bhoyrul
Mohammed Nabbous was killed in Benghazi by pro-Gaddafi forces last year
The Libyan activist credited with bringing global attention to the killings in the country has been voted the world’s fifth most influential Arab, in the annual Power 500 list published by Arabian Business on Sunday.
Mohammed Nabbous was an information technologist, blogger, businessperson and civilian journalist who created and founded Libya Al Hurra TV. It was the first independent broadcast news organisation since Gaddafi took power in Libya. Libya Al Hurra TV was established in Benghazi, Libya on 19 February 2011 and started broadcasting online when Nabbous established a two-way satellite connection in the wake of a complete Internet blackout imposed by the Gaddafi regime subsequent to the 17 February protests. In the last weeks of his life, Nabbous focused on bringing international attention to the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Libya, with his reports being widely reported by western media organisations, and seen by leading politicians across Europe and the USA.
Mohammed Nabbous was just 28 years old when he was killed last year in Benghazi, by a Pro-Gaddafi sniper and killed on 19 March 2011 while reporting on the fighting in the city. Since his death, many experts in Libya and the west have credited Nabbous for his pivotal role in bringing the world’s attention to the killings in his native country.
Saudi Arabia’s Prince Alwaleed topped the Arabian Business Power List for the eighth successive year.
Emirates Airline chairman Sheikh Ahmed was ranked second. The highest new entry was third placed Reem Asaad, the Saudi woman who launched a campaign to allow women to work in lingerie shops. By last July, her campaign paid off when the Saudi Labour Ministry banned men from working in lingerie shops after a directive from King Abdullah – in an instant, creating 44,000 jobs for women. Emaar chairman Mohamed Alabbar was fourth on the list.
The 2012 Power 500 contains a record 127 new entries, and also features 105 women, the highest ever number. The UAE has the highest number of entries with 96 on the list, followed by Saudi Arabia with 62 and 45 from the US. In total, Arabs living in 37 different countries are featured on the list.
When it comes to country of origin, Lebanon contributes the most with 85 entries, followed by 67 from Saudi Arabia and 58 from Egypt.
Ed Attwood, Editor of Arabian Business, said: “What we have published today is the most comprehensive guide every to Arab influence all across the world. Our researchers have looked at the work of Arabs in every continent and every country across the globe, and covered every sector from business and finance to media, sports and science. It is clear from this list that Arab success and influence across the world has never been more significant than it is today.”