Somali family recovering with the help of Utica agencies after apartment fire

What is wrong with this picture?

From the Utica Observer-Dispatch (hat tip: Joanne):

Apartment with nine kids in it catches fire when Mom goes shopping, but, although Mom has been here since 2006, she can’t speak enough English to deal with this emergency.

Somali mom (Do I detect a baby bump? Or, just a lot of fabric?). Photo: Mark DiOrio / Observer-Dispatch


On Feb. 22, Johara Abdi came home to a nightmare.

Her Adrean Terrace apartment was on fire with her 4-year-old daughter Halima Haji still inside.

And the Somali-Bantu refugee didn’t know enough English to communicate with emergency responders.

“I went to go shopping. When I get here, I see a lot of fire,” Abdi said through an interpreter. “I couldn’t (communicate). It was very difficult life for me.”

Emergencies, such as fires, are terrible situations for anyone, especially for refugees and immigrants who speak little or no English.

A five bedroom apartment!  Can you imagine what that cost someone!

Abdi and her nine children, ages 2 to 17, were displaced from the five-bedroom apartment at 64 W. Adrean Terrace, by the fire, which originated in the kitchen.

Temporarily living in a four bedroom place while housing authority renovates them a bigger place.  How many bedrooms did they have in Somalia?

The Municipal Housing Authority has found them a new apartment and is in the process of renovating in, said authority consultant Bob Calli. “We’re shooting for the middle of the month to move them into the apartment.”

Until then, they are living in a four-bedroom apartment, and space is at a premium.

Then get this, the Dad isn’t living with the family because there isn’t enough room.  Or, could he have another wife in town?  Is there ever any curiosity by reporters and editors when they hear a line like that?  With nine kids (the youngest is 2!), clearly he found some time to stop by, but not enough time to be around to save the kids from a fire.

Abdi’s husband, Omar Dhume, works a minimum-wage job and is learning English. The money he earns is not enough for the family to get a larger apartment or house, and there’s not enough room for him to live with his family, he said.

This article is about the one little girl who was injured, but is recovering (who is paying her medical bills?), and Mom is worried about her.

What’s going to happen?” Abdi asked. “Will she grow up a normal person, will she have mental problems? As a mom, I feel like she’s not the same as other kids.”

No comment.

Utica is one of New York state’s most “welcoming” cities.  I looked up all the stats for NY, and do plan to post on the numbers one of these days!  The city has taken 5,095 refugees since 2001.

Oh, great, there is more.  They are teaching the kids a Somali language and Arabic in Utica, here.

Here they come! More Muslim illegal aliens to Italy and Malta…

….which means more for America too!

They come via boat from mostly North Africa to seek asylum (they say) in the West.  The US has added an extra draw—we have transformed some of Malta’s illegal alien Somalis into legitimate refugees and brought them to your towns.

Migrants brought in by helicopter to Malta earlier this week. Photo: Times of Malta

Refugees are supposed to seek asylum in the first safe place they arrive, but the whole system has now been perverted because the US (during the Bush Administration!) changed the rules.  Asylum shopping is all the rage.

We told you about the controversial perversion of refugee law in RRW’s first month in existence in 2007.  Here is that short post, but it wasn’t until later that we understood the significance of what Bush did.

This is Malta’s and the European Union’s problem, not ours!

This is the news on the latest arrivals yesterday, from the UN:

5 July 2013 — The United Nations refugee agency estimates that some 8,400 migrants and asylum-seekers landed on the coasts of Italy and Malta in the first six months of this year, most of them from North Africa, having crossed the Mediterranean, one of the busiest seaways in the world.

Around 7,800 of the migrants and asylum-seekers arrived in Italy, while Malta received around 600, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Most of those making the journey departed from North Africa, principally Libya (around 6,700 people). The remaining 1,700 crossed from Greece and Turkey, landing in southern Italy.

Countries in sub-Saharan Africa are the main places of origin of these migrants and asylum-seekers, particularly Somalia and Eritrea. Other countries of origin include Egypt, Pakistan and Syria. Nationals of Gambia, Mali and Afghanistan also make these crossings, but in smaller numbers, noted UNHCR.


“In view of the perils, UNHCR again calls on all vessels at sea to be on alert for migrants and refugees in need of rescue,” he said at a news conference in Geneva. “We also renew our call to all shipmasters in the Mediterranean to remain vigilant and to carry out their duty of rescuing vessels in distress.

“International and European law also requires States to ensure that people intercepted or rescued at sea who seek asylum can gain access to territory and to an asylum procedure where their international protection needs or claims can be examined,” he added.

No “pushback” from Malta allowed! 

A day before the above UN story, the Times of Malta reported on the arrival of more boats.  The US will be taking some off their hands!  Hey, do you think Europe might take some of our illegal aliens?  Not a chance!

The Malta office of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees said today that pushing back irregular migrants to their point of departure was not an option in view of the situation they faced in Libya.

In a statement, it noted that in less than 24 hours, four overcrowded boats were intercepted by Italy and Malta and almost 800 people were rescued. A total of 290 were brought to Malta.

A pushback policy was momentarily introduced some years ago following a controversial agreement between Italy and the Gaddafi regime, lambasted by humanitarian organisations.

“Those in need of international protection will now have the opportunity to have their asylum claims assessed. UNHCR Malta commends all entities and individuals involved in this effort,” the office said.


So far in 2013, around 600 asylum seekers have arrived in Malta, while almost 200 beneficiaries of protection have been assisted to settle in the US and other countries. [What other countries?—ed]

In fact we have taken 210 of Malta’s illegal alien boat people in the first 8 months of this fiscal year.  There were 191 cases which means the majority of the aliens we took were single (all men?).

You know that the possibility of winning the asylum prize—a free ticket to America—is a lure for more illegals to try to get to Malta.

For a gazillion previous posts on Malta, click here.

Refugee Resettlement Watch celebrates 6th anniversary

Actually it was on July 1, but I forgot about it until today!

Who knew six years ago that an encounter with the Virginia Council of Churches (contractor Church World Service) in Hagerstown, MD would have led me to what is turning into a daily mission to bring to light the problems associated with refugee resettlement primarily as it is presently practiced in the United States.

Writing daily as well about other parts of the world, and about other aspects of immigration, helps us better understand what is happening to America.

Since July 1, 2007, blog partner Judy and I have written 4,805 posts.  That is an average of 2.2 posts every day.

We have had 1,487,605 visitors.  And, I thought it was funny to see that on July 11th, 2007 we celebrated our 200th visitor.  This blog has a very narrow focus, so we are thrilled at the number of visitors we receive!

Our best day was this year, on May 29th, when we wrote a post entitled: ‘They are fighting back in Sweden.‘ There were 6,512 views that day, 5,129 clicked on that post.

In February 2012, wordpress began reporting statistics on what countries readers were arriving from.  Here are the top ten, with the US, of course, leading the way:

US, UK, Canada, Australia, India, Sweden, South Africa, Germany, Thailand and Malaysia (that one surprised me!).

The top five posts of all time are these:

Refugee Resettlement Fact Sheets (latest fact sheet posted June 20th)

How did we get so many Somali refugees (2008)

Why so many Somalis in Minneapolis? (2011)

Asylum seekers head for Israel (2009)

Muslim immigration killing Sweden (2009)

Thanks for visiting RRW!

We have a facebook page (which I am terrible at maintaining) and you can follow me on twitter AnnC@refugeewatcher.  I started tweeting not too long ago, but sure would like some more followers!

Also, please consider subscribing to RRW and you will receive an e-mail every time we post.