by Abdi-Noor Mohamed
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
"Go to the Land of Habasha" Prophet Mohamed PBUH ordered his followers who were fleeing from Mecca, Saudi Arabia, as a result of religious prosecution. "There" he added "you will find a king under whose throne no one is harmed, no matter which religion a person believes" That was the eons of time which dates back to more than 1400 years.
The land was Ethiopia and the King´s name was King Nagash. In connection to that, I can relate my present situation in Sweden to that of the Prophet era. As a Moslem who ran away from strife in his own country I have finally ended up in a non-Moslem country,Sweden, where I am granted asylum till such time peace returns to my country: Somalia. Here we can see that humanity has no boundaries even though some people attempt to use religion as a block to deny people to help each other on humanity basis.
Sweden is ruled by a king (ceremonial though) under whose throne everybody is protected no matter which color, creed or religion a person believes in and, above all, no child within the jurisdiction of Swedish law goes to bed hungry or left in the streets, abandoned and abused.
That is where most of my joy and respect had sourced from when I attended a high profile event held at the Kulturparken of Vaxjo on 2011-04-01 in which Princess Victoria and her husband Daniel were being welcomed. It was a well organized event which started much earlier than expected as people who trickled in small numbers in the beginning had soon grown to the size of a large crowd. In the well-decorated, well-packed room they exchanged smiles as an expression of a deeply-felt joy. Swedes, though naturally quiet, have been much quieter that day as if they were observing a special royal protocol.
Silence has been descending like a fog in the woods but it never took charge of the whole environment as it was often repulsed by few chats that were coming to life sporadically. No sooner did the anxiety of waiting crept than we were animated by the sight of the princess who was beaming with such a majestic elegance with Prince Daniel, her husband walked alongside as he waved for the cheering people.
The event has been opened by the kulturprken Chief, Erica Månsson who welcomed the royal couple at the kulturparken and wished a happy life for them. Then a performance on the importance of glass has been staged by two ladies. Two other women have sung for the couple and then another lady Lixuan An from the project Embrace has taken the floor and made a briefing about her project on migration
My eight-year daughter, Maria Abdi-Noor has been selected to give flowers to the newly-wed couple and, as a father, I feel honored to have been part of this historic moment. That scarf covered on Maria´s head (picture) is the only item remaining for her to claim as a heritage from her country. The rest are gone with the wind. She can hardly reconnect with the history of her forefathers and her Somali language is fast eroding. That piece of cloth represents her identity as a Somali and a Moslem since there is no way either in paper or otherwise, can she prove her somali identity. Neither can I or you,if you are Somali, because our passports are not regarded as a valid document on grounds that they were manufactured in the streets rather than being produced by a recognized government. That is why Somalis are not allowed to re-unite with their families in Sweden. Children like Maria, who are out of danger in terms of war, can be a voice for those children who are cut off from their parents. Children need to be accorded special attention as the only thing they know is peace and to them, peace means to live with their parents even if the parents live in a situation of war.
Writer and Film maker