Umar Farooq

Ancil Payne Fellow

Photo of Umar Farooq

Umar Farooq was an Ancil Payne Fellow with ProPublica. Previously, Farooq worked as a foreign correspondent, reporting from the Middle East and South and Central Asia. His work includes breaking news and feature writing, and he has been a recipient of grants from the National Geographic Society and the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. Farooq has covered Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey and Syria as a reporter for the Christian Science Monitor, the Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times, and as a staff correspondent for Reuters and Al Jazeera English. His work has also appeared in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, National Geographic, the Guardian, the Atlantic, the Nation, the New Humanitarian, the Boston Review, the Daily Beast, the Globe and Mail and other outlets.

Police Departments Are Turning to AI to Sift Through Millions of Hours of Unreviewed Body-Cam Footage

Body camera video equivalent to 25 million copies of “Barbie” is collected but rarely reviewed. Some cities are looking to new technology to examine this stockpile of footage to identify problematic officers and patterns of behavior.

When Alabama Police Kill, Surviving Family Can Fight Years to See Bodycam Footage. There’s No Guarantee They Will.

Alabama is among the most restrictive states for disclosing body-camera footage when police kill loved ones. Surviving family members often must go to court to get access to the video, and even if successful, they usually can’t share it publicly.

Body Cameras Were Sold as a Tool of Police Reform. Ten Years Later, Most of the Footage Is Kept From Public View.

There were 101 people killed at the hands of police in June 2022. More than a year later, police had released body-camera footage of only 33 of those killings, ProPublica has found.

How Police Have Undermined the Promise of Body Cameras

Hundreds of millions in taxpayer dollars have been spent on what was sold as a revolution in transparency and accountability. Instead, police departments routinely refuse to release footage — even when officers kill.

In Arizona Water Ruling, the Hopi Tribe Sees Limits on Its Future

Arizona's unique method for awarding water to tribes was supposed to open up economic possibilities beyond farming for the Hopi Tribe. Instead, the tribe says it has dashed their dreams of building a thriving homeland.

The Colorado River Flooded Chemehuevi Land. Decades Later, the Tribe Still Struggles to Take Its Share of Water.

The Chemehuevi’s reservation fronts about 30 miles of the Colorado River, yet 97% of the tribe’s water stays in the river, much of it used by Southern California cities. The tribe isn’t paid for it.

Supreme Court Keeps Navajo Nation Waiting for Water

Decades of negotiations between the tribe and Arizona over water rights have proven fruitless. The court case was the Navajo Nation’s bid to accelerate the process and secure water for its reservation.

How Arizona Stands Between Tribes and Their Water

As it negotiates water rights with tribes, Arizona goes to unique lengths to extract concessions that limit tribes’ opportunities for growth and economic development, according to a ProPublica and High Country News investigation.

U.S. Lawmakers Demand Federal Scrutiny of Turkey’s Drones

Members of Congress are calling for an investigation into how U.S. technology ended up in Turkey’s TB2 drone, which has fast become a favorite of embattled nations. “We need a full accounting,” said one lawmaker.

“The Drone Problem”: How the U.S. Has Struggled to Curb Turkey, a Key Exporter of Armed Drones

Turkey is changing the face of modern warfare with its TB2 drone. As the weapon spreads across the globe, some U.S. lawmakers seek to crack down on the country, saying it’s exploiting its NATO status to obtain key parts from Western manufacturers.

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