“Ever since I arrived in Austria, Iâ€™ve been very eager to be a part of the society here. I hope to be fluent in German within a year and to complete my studies in Informatics afterwards, which I had to give up in Iraq. I want to make friends and to learn everything about Austrians: What do they like to eat? What do they do when they meet with their friends? What are their favourite things in life? What are their personalities like? Life here is nothing like in Iraq, but I still donâ€™t think we are all that different.
I think a lot about my life in Iraq and worry about the people I had to leave behind. The conflicts between Sunnis and Shia and the terroristic activities of ISIS affect the lives of everyone who lives there. I am constantly afraid that my parents, my two brothers, and my two sisters could die any minute. I am glad to be alive myself, considering that I was in life threatening situations two times already:
One evening in 2014, I was walking home from a friendâ€™s place in Baghdad. It was 11 p.m. and the streets were empty. Suddenly, a car drove by and the people inside started shooting at me. I ran as fast as I could and tried to open the door of a house nearby, but it was locked. I was terrified but I didnâ€™t stop running until there was a wall in front of me. I jumped over it and ended up inside a house. More and more people were turning on the lights and looking out of the windows to see what was going on. The car drove away.
Some months later, I was at home with my grandfather. Somebody was supposed to come and pick him up with a car, so I opened the door to step outside. Suddenly, there were bullets hitting the door and the walls of our apartment. I pulled my grandfather to the floor and we both tried not to move. The shooters drove away again. They must have thought we were dead.
I escaped all this to bring my family to Europe as soon as possible. They are not safe. Yesterday, I received a phone call from my brother in Iraq: There has been a bombing near our house and more than 70 people died.”
*Hussainâ€™s message says â€œThank you Austria, for opening your arms to all Arabic refugeesâ€