Abdalaziz Alhamza is an award-winning Syrian journalist, human rights defender
Alhamza is an International Security Program fellow at New America (organization) and he is also a fellow and Next Generation Leader at the McCain Institute.
Abdalaziz Alhamza started non-violent protests and demonstrations against the Syrian regime in 2011 and was arrested by the regime three times in 2012. The Islamic State (ISIS) interrogated him more than once about his activism. After ISIS took control of his hometown, Raqqa, in January 2014, he escaped to Turkey and started RBSS with his friends to show the reality of life in Raqqa under ISIS rule to the rest of the world. Their smuggled video footage and images for which they risked their lives have been shown on every television network and print media including CNN, BBC, Al-Jazeera, MSNBC.
Abdalaziz Alhamza has received many awards and honors on behalf of RBSS including: the International Press Freedom award by the Committee to Protect Journalists in 2015; named a Global Thinker by Foreign Policy; the Ischia International Journalism Award in 2016; the Civil Courage Prize in 2016; and many others.
Abdalaziz Alhamza was the subject of the documentary City Of Ghosts, directed by Oscar-nominated director Matthew Heineman, and bought by Amazon Studios (available on Prime). City Of Ghosts was named to the Oscar Documentary Feature shortlist in 2018.
Abdalaziz Alhamza was featured in The New Yorker, Wired, BILD, and published an Op-Ed in the New York Times entitled “Bombs Will Not Defeat ISIS (but Maybe the Internet Will).” and he wrote an op-ed and letter to the president of the United States of America Donald Trump which was published on Fox News.
Abdalaziz Alhamza has spoken around the world about ISIS and how to combat extremist ideology including at the White House, the United Nations, the United States Congress, the American National Security Council, the German Foreign Office, the Italian Foreign Ministry, and the Oslo Freedom Forum, among other places.