Journalists Michael Safi and Nosheen Iqbal will lead the publisher’s principal audio news content.
Strengthening ‘Today in Focus’’ reputation for high-quality global coverage, international correspondent Safi will continue to be based in Beirut, Lebanon.
He has been an integral part of The Guardian’s global coronavirus coverage and has reported on major stories in the Middle East and Asia, including the Beirut explosion and Sri Lanka’s terrorist attacks.
Back in the UK, Iqbal currently reports for The Observer. She has previously been The Guardian’s women’s editor, a features commissioning editor for G2, and a contributing editor to the publisher’s culture desk.
The pair will take over in the coming weeks, as Anushka Asthana leaves the news brand this month. Rachel Humphreys will continue to present the podcast alongside Safi and Iqbal.
‘Today in Focus’ continues to go from strength to strength: it saw a 51% uplift in listens year-on-year from 2019 to 2020, and regularly features at the top of the podcast charts for news and politics in the UK.
Nicole Jackson, The Guardian’s head of audio, commented warmly on the updated team, saying: “We are excited to welcome Michael and Nosheen to the team, and to introduce them to listeners very soon.”
Speaking about podcasts more widely, she added: “Audio remains an important part of the Guardian’s strategy, as we continue to connect more closely with readers and produce original journalism and impactful audio storytelling in new and interesting ways.”
You can listen to ‘Today in Focus’ every weekday wherever you listen to podcasts.