Dr. Monia Mazigh was born and raised in Tunisia and immigrated to Canada in 1991. She is the National Coordinator of the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group. She speaks Arabic, French, and English fluently and holds a Ph.D. in finance from McGill University. Dr. Mazigh has worked at the University of Ottawa and taught Finance at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, British Columbia. In 2004, she ran in the federal election as a candidate for the NDP, gaining the most votes for her riding in the history of the NDP.
Dr. Mazigh was catapulted onto the public stage in 2002 when her husband Maher Arar, was deported to Syria where he was tortured and held without charge for over a year. During that time, Dr. Mazigh campaigned vigorously for her husband’s release and later fought to re-establish his reputation and sought reparations. In January 2007, after a lengthy inquiry, her husband finally received an apology from the Canadian.
Dr. Mazigh has authored a book called Hope and Despair which documents her ordeal after her husband was arrested and how she campaigned to clear his name. It was published in 2008.
Dr. Mazigh wrote many articles published in the Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star, the Ottawa Citizen, Le Devoir and other newspapers.
In 2011, Dr. Mazigh published a novel in French, Miroirs et mirages. Stories of four Muslim women living in Canada. Miroirs et mirages was shortlisted for the prestigious Ontario Trillium award, for the Ottawa Book Award and for the Christine Dimitriu-Van- Saanen Award of the Salon du Livre de Toronto.
In summer 2014, Mirrors and mirages was published in English by Anansi House.
Dr. Mazigh published in September 2015, her second novel in French about the events of the Arab Spring. Hope has Two Daughters will be published in English in 2017 by Anansi House.