Expertise: Geopolitics, Security, Human Rights, Communications.

Locations: Sub-Saharan Africa (UK based).

Illia is a published writer, radio journalist and researcher. For more than 20 years he has worked on socio-economic and political issues in Africa with first-hand knowledge of West-Africa. Born in Niger, he has travelled extensively across the region to Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Liberia, Guinea, Mauritania, among others.

Illia worked for various international organisations including BBC Afrique, the French section of BBC World Service, with an estimated audience of 11 million listeners. For more than four years he worked as a producer/presenter reporting and analysing current affairs in Africa.

He also worked for ARTICLE XIX, a London based Human Rights organisation, as author of two studies on freedom of expression in Niger and Mauritania.

More recently, with Open Doors International and World Watch Monitor as Senior Analyst and Africa Bureau Chief, his work has concentrated on religious freedom, persecution, and Islamist insurgency in West, Central and North Africa.

Illia has developed into a widely respected spokesperson raising awareness on various issues affecting African states. His fluency in English, French and Hausa (widely spoken in West and Central Africa) has led to him making regular appearances in international media such as The Washington Post, La Tribune de Genève, Le Temps, la Radio et Television Suisse (RTS), Radio France Internationale, TV5 Monde, and AFP.

Illia has attended some of the world’s most high-profile assemblies and has presented at the World Economic Forum in Davos, the Human Rights Council in Geneva and the UK parliament’s House of Commons in London.

He graduated from the University of Niamey (Niger), and holds a master’s degree (Portsmouth University, UK) which focused on the history, politics, and international relations of Francophone countries in Africa.