Safe Haven

18 nov 2015

Biniam Biniam is a geographer living in asylum seeker centre Heumensoord Bekijk alle berichten van Biniam

‘We are saddened and grieved by the horrific tragedy that happened in Paris. But, there are some people who blame refugees for this inhumane act. However, people must realize that this terrorist attack was conducted by the same people who tortured and killed us back in our country, and caused us to flee.’ Those were some of the words posted by one of the refugees in the Heumensoord camp on the Facebook page ‘Refugees in Netherlands Nijmegen’. People in the camp are shocked by the attack in Paris, that killed 129 people and injured over 300. There was also a march on Monday to show respect to the victims and support the families and the French government.

We used to think that the Western countries are a safe haven, where there are no killings and attacks. But sometimes tragedies like the one in Paris happen and reality checks in, which make you realize there is no place as heaven in the world. There are still very cruel people who have no humanity and are against civilization whose main purpose is to inflict terror and fear. One of those groups is ISIS, who said its men are fighting in the name of Islam, which is totally untrue. They are hated and pitied by the followers of the Islam religion. I know this for sure, because I have a Muslim friend who explained to me that it doesn’t have anything to do with Islam.

I know that many refugees have lost families or friends who were killed by ISIS. I have a friend whose cousin was beheaded in Libya by the same group. When I was in Libya, my main fear was to be captured by ISIS. If the police or other groups caught you in Libya, you could get away by paying ransom. But when it was ISIS, it was your end. Especially for people who came from Syria, it was the main reason they left behind all their family and belongings to search for a safe place. Due to the media, some people may point their finger to the flow of refugees as the cause of the Paris attack. But you can talk to refugees anywhere and know right away that it is a false accusation, fabricated by anti-refugee groups. We all must work together to stop such terrible attacks and try to make our world a peaceful place where we can live in harmony and respect.

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