Amal Ramzi Alamuddin is born in Beirut, Lebanon, Her mother Baria, is the foreign editor of Arab newspaper, al-Hayat. In her youth she was a newsreader on Lebanese television. Her father, Ramzi, is a retired professor of business studies at the American University of Beirut. According the the Daily Mail, Ramzi married outside the Druze faith. He met Baria in a nightclub in Beirut.
Her grandfather was a government minister. Her grandmother is said to be the first woman graduate of the American University in Beirut. She has three younger siblings; a sister, Tala, and two brothers Samer and Ziad. Her cousin is Rima Alamuddin, a poet who was tragically shot dead, aged only 22, by a disgruntled boyfriend while on holiday in Lebanon from her studies at Cambridge University.
Alamuddin’s family flees from Beirut, which was in civil war, to Gerarrd’s Cross, London. She attends Dr Challoner’s High School in Amersham.
Alamuddin graduates from St. Hugh’s College, Oxford, where she received an Exhibition (a financial award or grant to an individual student, normally on grounds of merit).
Alamuddin graduates from New York University School of Law, where she receives the Jack J. Katz Memorial Award (conferred for excellence in the field of Entertainment law). During her time at NYU she studied both public international law and U.S. law, and worked for one semester as a student law-clerk at the Chambers of Judge Sonia Sotomayor at the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Joins the International Court of Justice in September 2004. She is one of two NYU-sponsored clerks at the Court, acting as a clerk to Judge Vladen S. Vereshchetin (Russian Federation) and Judge Nabil Elaraby (Egypt).
Called to the Bar (qualified to be allowed to argue in court on behalf of another party).
The couple are introduced to each other at a charity event.
People magazine reports Clooney’s engagement to Alamuddin, an Oxford graduate and British lawyer who shares the same passion as Clooney for campaigning for international human rights. After visiting her parents in Dubai in March, Clooney gets down on one knee to propose. Clooney presents Alamuddin with a 7-carat emerald cut diamond, ethically mined. The ring also features two platinum tapered baguettes. The couple wanted to keep the engagement quiet for a little while. Source:
George and Amal are trying to keep things very low-key but they also aren’t really trying to hide this, it doesn’t seem. I think it’s like they want the people they love to know that this is real, that they plan on being together forever
Alamuddin is representing Abdullah al-Senussi, Colonel Gaddafi’s former spy chief, who is accused of numerous atrocities against his people. She is helping the 64-year-old appeal against the decision to allow his trial to take place in Libya, where he could face the death penalty. al-Senussi was convicted in absentia by a French court for the 1989 bombing of a French airliner. In Libya he is accused of overseeing a prison massacre of 1,200 inmates as well as torture and hangings. He was charged along with Gaddafi’s playboy son, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, with war crimes and crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court.
Under United Nations rules, the ICC was due to hear the case unless Libya could prove that it was capable of overseeing it. Libya was given approval last October, despite allegations that al-Senussi had been mistreated in custody. Alamuddin said Libya refused to allow her or any of his ICC-appointed defence team to visit him
The whole point of the ICC is to be there when national systems cannot do the job. Instead, it is giving a flawed, dangerous process the stamp of approval.
After The Daily Mail reports George Clooney’s future mother-in-law does want Clooney to marry her daughter, Amal, because of religious differences, and the actor responds in an op-ed:
First of all, factually none of the story is true. Amal’s mother is not Druze. She has not been to Beirut since Amal and I have been dating, and she is in no way against the marriage, but none of that is the issue…The irresponsibility, in this day and age, to exploit religious differences where none exist, is at the very least negligent and more appropriately dangerous.
After the op-ed was published, The Daily Mail removed the article from its website, The Mail Online, and issued a statement:
The MailOnline story was not a fabrication but supplied in good faith by a reputable and trusted freelance journalist. She based her story on conversations with a long standing contact who has strong connections with senior members of the Lebanese community in the UK and the Druze in Beirut. We only became aware of Mr. Clooney’s concerns this morning and have launched a full investigation. However, we accept Mr. Clooney’s assurance that the story is inaccurate and we apologize to him, Miss Amal Alamuddin and her mother, Baria, for any distress caused.
After reports come out saying Alamuddin is to be nominated to join the UN Commission of Inquiry for Gaza, which will look into possible violations of the rules of war in Gaza, the human rights lawyer releases a statement saying she cannot accept due to other commitments:
There are various reports published today stating that I have been appointed as one of three members of the UN Commission of Inquiry for Gaza. I am horrified by the situation in the occupied Gaza Strip, particularly the civilian casualties that have been caused, and strongly believe that there should be an independent investigation and accountability for crimes that have been committed…I was contacted by the UN about this for the first time this morning. I am honoured to have received the offer, but given existing commitments — including eight ongoing cases — unfortunately could not accept this role. I wish my colleagues who will serve on the commission courage and strength in their endeavors.
Canada’s William Schabas, an international law professor at Middlesex University, will chair the commission.
The couple marry at the Aman Canal Grande Hotel in Venice, Italy, surrounded by their families and many A-list guests, including Matt Damon, Bono and Cindy Crawford. The ceremony is conducted by Walter Veltroni, the former mayor of Rome and Clooney’s close friend. Press and paparazzi followed the wedding party and guests, as they sailed around the canals on boats. Today’s ceremony is symbolic, with a civil ceremony is expected to take place on Monday (spet 29). A 50-foot stretch of the Grand Canal waterway in front of the 16th-century Cavalli Palace will be closed for two hours that day.
Every wedding guests receives a page containing the wedding event itinerary, as well as a few specific rules to follow. To protect the couple’s privacy, and ensure that no wedding photos leak to the press, every guest receives a “burner phone” with a special code to use during the wedding weekend, and are asked to leave their personal phones in their hotel rooms during the ceremony and reception. The couple writes:
We have to work very hard to keep our pictures OUR pictures. If you see someone taking a photo with a phone … you can help by notifying security.
Clooney is named Barbara Walter’s Most Fascinating Person of 2014. Walters:
I guess the question is, ‘What does it take to fascinate one of the most fascinating men in the world?’ She is known primarily through her spouse, and while we know little about her, we know a great deal about him. And he has fascinated many women—especially me. Everyone said that no one would get George Clooney to the altar. In fact, George Clooney—who had been married briefly in his 20s—said it himself, to me, in 1995.
Clooney, who represents Fahmy, urges the Egyptian President to overturn the Cairo convictions.
The verdict today sends a very dangerous message in Egypt. It sends a message that journalists can be locked up for simply doing their job, for telling the truth and reporting the news…[Every third party who has weighed in on the lengthy case says] there is no evidence to sustain any of the charges….It sends a dangerous message that there are judges in Egypt who will allow their courts to become instruments of political repression and propaganda.
At a Texas women’s’ conference, Clooney talks about president-elect Trump.
We have to hope for the best. The president-elect has said that fighting ISIS is actually a priority … so it may be that there can be progress, and obviously everyone has to respect the outcome of the democratic process here, and we have to hope for the best. [However, Trump’s comments] that there should be a religious test imposed on entering the U.S. or the fact that there should be state-sponsored torture or that families of suspected terrorists should all be killed — all of those things are violations of international human rights law and the values that underlie that…I think there’s some concern from abroad as to are these things actually going to happen, or is the U.S. going to lose some of the moral standing that it has internationally.
She also talks about women’s rights:
The worst thing that we can do as women is not stand up for each other, and this is something we can practice every day, no matter where we are and what we do — women sticking up for other women, choosing to protect and celebrate each other instead of competing or criticizing one another.