Lila Hassan

Former Tow Journalism Fellow, FRONTLINE/Columbia Journalism School Fellowships

Lila Hassan is an investigative journalist and recent master’s graduate of the Toni Stabile Center for Investigative Journalism at Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, where she was a Lorana-Sullivan full-scholarship recipient.

Before Columbia, Hassan was the senior Middle East and North Africa associate at Human Rights Watch, where she contributed research and support to investigative reports of human rights abuses across the region. She was also an editorial intern at Thomson Reuters Cairo bureau, where she covered black market raids, international business deals, and court trials. In Istanbul, she covered the crackdown of an LGBTQ Pride parade, Syrian refugees’ resettlement, and regional migration trends for a local daily paper.

Her work has appeared in The Guardian, Reuters, Kaiser Health News, Documented, and the Daily Sabah. Hassan holds a bachelor’s degree in political science with honors from the Scholars Program at CUNY Brooklyn College, where she was also a Jeannette K. Watson Fellow. She speaks Arabic and French.


New York, NY

‘A Complex Truth’: Dan Reed on the Liberty City Seven and Counterterrorism in His New Doc, ‘In the Shadow of 9/11’
Dan Reed ('Leaving Neverland') said long-form documentary allows the telling of a story on a human scale. He discussed his new doc examining the Liberty City Seven case with FRONTLINE.
August 10, 2021
What Is the Fatemiyoun Brigade and Why Does It Make the Taliban Nervous?
Amid the withdrawal of U.S. troops, Taliban leaders claim Iran is mobilizing its proxy militia the Fatemiyoun for civil war within Afghanistan.
July 20, 2021
Do Military Courts Play a Role in the Wake of January 6?
As the Department of Justice continues to identify and charge current and former members of the U.S. Armed Forces in relation to January 6, military courts typically aren’t the go-to option for prosecution. Here’s why.
May 25, 2021
500,000 Refugees, ‘Slavery-like’ Compulsory Service, No National Elections, Border Conflicts & Secret Prisons: 5 Human Rights Crises in Eritrea
From compulsory conscription to the mass exodus of refugees, here is an introduction to five of Eritrea’s biggest human rights crises.
May 4, 2021
Repatriating ISIS Foreign Fighters Is Key to Stemming Radicalization, Experts Say, but Many Countries Don’t Want Their Citizens Back
A review of the 10 countries that yielded the most ISIS foreign fighters showed varying levels of commitment to repatriation and prosecution.
April 6, 2021
U.S. Shifts Policy in Yemen, But the War Is Not Over Yet
The Biden administration announced two policy decisions last week, both major reversals from the Trump era, that aid and human-rights groups see as the first steps toward ending the war in Yemen — but say there's more work to come.
February 9, 2021
Biden Announces End to U.S. Support for Offensives in War-Torn Yemen
President Joe Biden also designated a new U.S. special envoy to Yemen, the site of what the UN has called the world's "worst humanitarian crisis" and the subject of a new FRONTLINE documentary.
February 4, 2021
'Serious Threats' Ahead: Human Rights Experts Voice Concern for Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar Following Military Coup
Experts are worried the change in power will further endanger human rights protections in Myanmar, especially of Rohingya Muslims, whom FRONTLINE covered in the 2018 film "Myanmar's Killing Fields."
February 2, 2021
The Boogaloo Bois Have Guns, Criminal Records and Military Training. Now They Want to Overthrow the Government.
ProPublica and FRONTLINE have identified more than twenty members with ties to the armed forces. Experts worry that the extremists are using their military experience to train others for a second Civil War.
February 1, 2021
Wisconsin Recount Targets 2 Democratic Strongholds, Home to Black and Hispanic Voters
Unlike other places, where the Trump campaign has pursued statewide recounts, the Wisconsin request was limited to Dane and Milwaukee Counties, where Biden held solid leads.
November 25, 2020
A Look at the Places Behind ‘American Voices: A Nation in Turmoil'
To lend broad insight into the communities featured in FRONTLINE's 2020 post-election special, we’ve looked to census, city, county and state data for some key stats.
November 18, 2020
American Mom Who Pleaded Guilty to Terrorism Charges Sentenced to 6.5 Years
In 2015, Samantha Elhassani traveled to Syria with her family, where her husband and brother-in-law joined the Islamic State terrorist group. She was sentenced in an Indiana court today.  
November 9, 2020