In this panel, three leading investigative reporters will share their tools of the trade while working on high-impact investigations across the MENA region -- which according to RSF remains the most dangerous region for journalists facing oppressive governments or censorship by rebel militias.

Rana Sabbagh and Alia Ibrahim will show how they investigated the overseas assets of Lebanon's Central Bank Governor Riad Salame whose 30-year tenure ended in July 2023. Working with teams, both media partners collaborated to track offshore trusts Riad Salame and his associates used to buy properties worth over $130 million in several European countries. As a result, Salame has been sanctioned by the USA, Canada and the UK and is facing two international arrest warrants.

In the second investigation, Sabbagh worked with Rasha Qandeel to produce a 55-minute documentary linking Captagon trafficking across the region and beyond to top Syrian officials. This required embedding with the all-male Jordanian army in high-risk zones overlooking the no-man's land between Jordan and Syria where smugglers come across and inspecting army facilities in Lebanon's Beqaa Valley, as well as interviewing dangerous smugglers and drug addicts benefitting from a free rehab service in Amman.

Mohammad Bassiki, founder and chief editor of the Syrian network for accountability journalism (SIRAJ), will talk about collaborative investigations on Syria to enhance transparency, create accountability and strengthen laws in times of civil war and political uncertainty. He will shed light on SIRAJ’s latest investigations with the Guardian and ICIJ.