From child refugee to Guardian reporter: one journalist’s extraordinary story

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Aamna Mohdin was a young rookie newsman erstwhile she sewage her first overseas assignment. She was being sent to Calais to constitute astir “the Jungle”, an informal exile campy that had sprung up, made up of group hoping to transverse nan Channel for a amended life successful nan UK. She was tense astir doing a bully occupation but arsenic she walked astir nan chaotic maze of tents pinch group cooking connected unfastened fires she began to consciousness unusual and uneasy.

It wasn’t conscionable nan sadness of nan stories she was proceeding but thing much for illustration deja vu. When she told her mother astir her trip, her mother asked a mobility that astonished Aamna: why would she want to spell to a exile campy erstwhile they had risked everything to fly 1 themselves? The mobility sent Aamna spiralling arsenic she realised she had repressed her ain memories of surviving successful a campy successful Kenya arsenic a child, and really they had fled to nan UK.

Helen Pidd hears really that moment, and reporting connected nan Black Lives Matter movement, made Aamna realise she had a analyzable narration pinch her personality arsenic a refugee. Aamna, now nan Guardian’s organization affairs correspondent, explains really she began unearthing her family’s communicative and piecing together her ain puerility memories, visiting Somalia and nan exile campy successful which she had erstwhile lived, to effort to understand what it meant to her.

With nan exile situation showing nary signs of abating, and progressively harsh rhetoric astir “stopping nan boats”, Aamna tells Helen what she wishes group understood astir nan lives of galore refugees. And really nan governmental sermon has affected her life.

Aamna Mohdin
Photograph: Alice Zoo/The Guardian

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