Mary Harper

Mary Harper is the Africa Editor at BBC World Service News. She has reported on Africa for the BBC for two decades, and has a special interest in the Horn of Africa, especially Somalia, where she spends much of her time.

Much of her work focusses on violent radical Islam in Africa, and sea piracy off its shores. She has reported from many conflict zones including Sierra Leone, Liberia, Sudan, South Sudan, Algeria and the two Congos.

Mary is the author of GETTING SOMALIA WRONG? Faith, War and Hope in a Shattered State. She has written for The Economist, Granta, The Guardian, The Times and The Washington Post and is a regular speaker and moderator at universities, conferences and literary festivals.

She is an expert witness in Somali-related legal cases and is a fellow of The Rift Valley Institute and The Heritage Institute for Policy Studies. Mary has degrees from Cambridge University and the School of Oriental and African Studies.

Mary’s book about the East African jihadist group Al Shabaab, EVERYTHING YOU HAVE TOLD ME IS TRUE, was published by Hurst in April 2019.

You can follow Mary on Twitter @mary_harper and visit her website