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Iraqi boys plead for help to bring their father to P.E.I.

Ziyad Salman, left, and his brother, Omar, are pleading for the public’s help to bring their father to P.E.I.
Ziyad Salman, left, and his brother, Omar, are pleading for the public’s help to bring their father to P.E.I.

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. – A 12-year-old Iraqi boy living in Charlottetown wants his father back.

Ziyad Salman demonstrated a sense of purpose and urgency when he walked into The Guardian on Monday with his mother, Ashwaq, and his younger brother, Omar.

“I feel sad because people have their whole parents in (P.E.I.) and I only have my mom,’’ says Ziyad.

Ziyad’s 10-year-old brother, Omar, misses playing with his father in the park.

“I like him and he likes me,’’ says Omar.

Ziyad says the family does not know where to turn for help.

They approached Charlottetown MP Sean Casey as well as the Muslim Society of P.E.I.

Neither is able to help, notes Ziyad, because his father is not considered in a position of peril.

He is not in a war-torn country. He is not in a refugee camp.

Rather, Doud is living in France, but he is eager to join his family in Prince Edward Island.

“He doesn’t know the way to come and he doesn’t have the money to come,’’ says Ziyad.

Doud moved his family from Iraq to Lebanon seven years ago.

Ashwaq says her brother made life difficult for her husband, Doud, to the point the couple separated.

“My husband is very, very good,’’ she says. “My brother is crazy.’’

Ashwaq moved to P.E.I. with her two boys almost three years ago without Doud’s knowledge.

However, Doud made contact two years ago telling the family they cannot stay alone.

“He wants just like a normal family,’’ says Ziyad. “We want to stay together.’’

Ziyad says his father, a commercial painter by trade, could help bring some stability for the family.

Ashwaq is not working. She does not drive. She struggles with her English.

Ziyad, who is doing “fine’’ in school, as is his brother, wants his father to come to Charlottetown to look after the family.

Ashwaq also wants the whole family together in Prince Edward Island.

“I like it in P.E.I.,’’ she says.

“The people here are very, very good.’’

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