Thursday, December 11, 2014



"Who, when afflicted with calamity say: "Truly To Allah we belong and truly, to Him we shall return."" [The Qur'an; Chapter 2 (Al Baqarah - The Cow) : Verse 156]

 Our destiny is prearranged. I would like to share with you my poignant experience of an episode of our life that waits us all. For five days I learned more about life journey than my entire life, the death of my son Mohammed and the process I went through till we put him in his last room on the world and first hereafter. It is a tribute to dear son and a lesson to us all. 

Death respects no age, no gender, and no strength. We saw daily young dying, old surviving, strong dying and weak surviving. We witness fragile patients that survive on comma for decades. All these testimony and yet deep in our mind we think it is the old that dies. Every one of us will taste death at preset time by no one else but by our creator. That time can be sooner or later by the will of Allah.

I buried my beloved son MOHAMED yesterday, a young man at the best epoch of human life, man with entrepreneurial talent always thinking of building empires without neglecting his duty towards Allah and to us. He needed my input which I grossly failed. I regret utmost and it will remain a painful reminder in my life .It was just before Ramadan when finally we agreed to put the foundation of that empire in Hargeysa, a business empire under his leadership and my guidance. We were so happy so optimistic so looking forward that I was counting days. Alas just after Hajj he hinted he has light health problem. He was so strong physically and spiritually. He hid all his pain without whispering to the ears of those close to him. None of us knew the seriousness of his case. He endured all that pain all alone to save us from worry. I knew him for he never let us know anything that can worry us. Allah will be kind to my son as he was kind to us. That is what Allah promised and his promise is done before it is said.
On Sunday afternoon, I spent an hour with his body in mortuary reading Quran and offering Du’a. Each time I touched his body and see his face it was as though he was telling me " father don't worry I am in better hands, hands of Angels of heaven." Alhamdulilaa”

Our destiny is in Allah’s hands. I was not busy, not sick, not occupied, and no financial problem, yet I couldn’t move towards my beloved son, my only son. I regret very much and ask myself why and why yet I know I cannot take a step without Allah’s willing. It is hard to excuse myself from this gross irresponsibility. Astaqfurulla, Allah forgive me, I know my destiny is in your hands.

 I was so unlucky that I arrived a day late to see him alive but Allah gave me a way to communicate with him. I sensed he was listening and I promised to him to uphold his dreams Insha Allah. I promised to him more, that I will not share with you but ask you to help me by offering prayer so Allah help me  make it a reality.

Monday Duhur prayer I went with group of elders to pray in a Pakistani mosque in Grangetown where my home is located. After prayer I was surprised to hear the imam calling us to pray for the deceased. “Let us offer Du’as to the deceased young man Mohamed Ahmed Hassan Arwo" tears come to my eyes. He offered the best of Du’as and no one moved" then after Sunna prayer all came towards me giving me a hug and offering condolences. I was touched with their kindness and solidarity.

Tuesday morning and the washing ritual. The washing cermony was done in Aljalalia Mosque, in Grangetown, Cardiff. I washed him with my hands with the help of my close family and under the direction of Sheekh Omar, and Salama Funeral Services. I was delighted to be there to see his youthful body never changed glowing with freshness. Thank Allah he was so clean, so neat, so stunning, no trace of anything but shining body with nice smell. It was as though he was bathed before us. Deep in my heart I thanked Allah for this is a sign of Ehlu Jannah. The body of the deceased shows signs of hell or heaven. My son’s body was that of whom Allah promised for better life in Heaven.

After washing session finished I looked at him, not scaring but rather with exhilarating gesture I realized how his body is gleaming and how he grew a full dark beautiful beard. It looked trimmed and recently combed. A beard he never had but last days of his life.  The nice smell of his body was sensational. I hold his right hand and every part  was as  alive, bending, not stiff but nearly moving. . I entangled my fingers with him and offered a special Du’a.

Mohamed with me and my daughter in Jubail,Saudi Arabia

 Immediately family females members, led by his mother and sister came in. It was really a testing time. Thank Allah our worry never materialized. I never saw and never heard a pack of women under this circumstances as strong as they were, withholding all their feelings and clearly stating Du’a one after another, no cry at all, no chest beating, no hair tearing, just offering Du’as. His mother Amal a strong Muslim with mountains of Iman and courage of lion, told him what he has to say at the grave, when Angels question him about his beliefs  and asked Allah to forgive him for all that he has done for her and for me. She recited Quran and Du’as. It was the Du’as of his Aunt Hayat Omar Arteh, that touched my heart " Alhamdulilaa you are beautiful you are clean you are so sweet, you are Ehlu Janno, all signs are here Thank Allah” she continuously said without hesitation.

Then came the real test, the most touching. My daughter Najat kissed him and whispered into his ears “My brother you were all to me. You were my brother, my protector my guardian, you always advise me. I ask Allah to forgive you and to reward you Jannatul Fardaws for all the good deeds you have done and your love to us. You died young but accomplished great, Allah loves you” The courage of my daughter is beyond belief. I was shaking not with fear but with admiration. Thank Allah who gave me such strong family, thank Allah for giving me Amal as wife and Najat as a daughter.      
Then they kissed him and concluded with Du'as that we men couldn't offer. We were standing motionlessly, holding open hands towards heaven repeating Amen after them and in whispering voice.
Mohamed with his son Ahmed

We moved towards Al-Nur mosque for prayer. In front of the mosque I was met by my people of Cardiff. They are my people for they all love us as family. They are not just family but really good family, sharing with us the hard and the soft .My fellow Somalis and good number of other Muslims lined up to hug me and to offer condolences one by one. Masjidu-Nur of Butetown was crammed downstairs and upstairs. Women were given a special area where they were literally compressed like sardines in a box. After Duhur prayer Sh. Mohammed led Jinaza prayer. Tears filled my eyes but my heart was so cool and my mind told me my son is in the hands of his creator and he will be in better life than his short life here. I offered the Du’a wih parental tone and in my special words, as the rest of the congregation did. Then again I was attacked with love and solidarity, they offered condolences tears in their eyes and some cannot hold their sorry and openly cried.

We took the last episode of Mohamed's life, a trip to the Ely Cemetery. The ground was covered with my fellow Somalis and my fellow Muslims. Thank Allah for the number of attendants. Cars filled all open spaces and people covered all the grass area. They came from all over the world . From Holland, from Canada , from Saudi Arabia, from all UK of course large number came from our next door cities, Bristol and Newport. Many of them cried openly. I learned nothing is better than true friendship when I saw my son’s friends crying openly. I learned men cry not of fear but of love and sorry.
Mohammed with his grandfather Omer Arteh and his late grandmother Shukri Jirde. 

The grave itself is located at a corner and under a tree. A location anyone with choice would have chosen. Allah has chosen for my son MOHAMMED.  

May Allah bless his soul and make his grave a room from heaven. May Allah bestow his mercy and reward him Jannatul Fardaws for his loyalty to Allah and to his parents. I pray Allah to forgive me for all I haven't done for him. He gave me all his love while I did gave him a little of mine. Making his parents happy and satisfied was his utmost priority. It is painful to see ones child die before him but I am happy for all good deeds he have done in his short life. He never used his hand and tongue to harm any creature . To him they were tools to support, help and praise everyone. His heart was so huge he never found difficulty to entertain entire humanity with love and joy. I am proud to have Mohamed as my son. He departed us physically but he rests in my heart and mind for ever. He gave his entire life to serve us, never feel tired to execute our endless demands. He was a tower of help, mountain of support and river of love. Allah took my son for better life Insha Allah. His loyalty to Allah and to us will be rewarded with Allah's love.

Ahmed Arwo with his grandsoin Ahmed

Mohamed left in this world a son, named after me, Ahmed and a lovely wife who changed his life during this short period they were together. She made him happy, forward looking for better life. I noticed all these changes from the day they get married. My daughter-in-law Fathiya Sh Ibrahim I pray Allah to compensate your loss with better future and happy life in this world and forgiveness and Jannatul Fardaws hereafter.  

  Please do offer Du'a for him and for us.

Related articles:

My Daughter' s tribute

My tribute in Somali:


Please do offer Du'a for him and for us.

Father Tel:  07903744256 (UK)

Mother Amal Tel:  02920344085 (UK)

Ahmed Hassan Arwo
Mohamed Ahmed Arwo with Abdiwahab Ismail Raja, me and uncle Abdihakim,

Mohamed in white thob with uncles and first cousins
Mohamed behind in black suit with uncles and first cousins


Ahmed Hassan Arwo | Facebook

UK Accused of Training and Supporting Deadly Somaliland Counter-Terrorism Unit

The UK is providing training and support to a Somaliland counterterrorism unit accused of unlawful killings and political intimidation, according to members of Somaliland’s parliament.
The Rapid Reaction Unit (RRU), a Somaliland paramilitary counter-terror squad established in 2012, was deployed by President Ahmed Mohamed Mohamoud’s administration on November 15 to prevent opposition members of parliament (MPs) from entering parliament in order to influence a vote, members of Somaliland’s parliament told VICE News.
A report by Somaliland’s Human Rights Center, published Tuesday, also blamed the RRU for the deaths of at least two demonstrators after soldiers allegedly fired at a group of them indiscriminately. MPs confirmed that the RRU had been accused of killing protestors at demonstrations.
Citing “security reasons,” the UK Foreign Office will not confirm or deny to VICE News whether it provides assistance to the RRU. However, the British government has previously released details of support, including security equipment, vehicles, a UK-built headquarters, and a pretrial detention facility — all “gifted” as part of its counter-terrorism program.
Abdirahman Mohamed Jama, a Waddani party MP, accused the president of using the paramilitary unit as a personal task force, and said that British forces are regularly witnessed training the RRU at a camp in Hargeisa.
“I have seen with my own eyes that they were training them how to shoot,” he said. “I saw them learning how to shoot bullets a month ago at a camp in Hargeisa.
“It’s not a secret,” he added. “Everybody in Somaliland knows that the British are funding the RRU.”
An annual report by the Somaliland Human Rights Center released on Tuesday said that the number of soldiers in the RRU has doubled from 50 to 100 in the last two years.
The RRU uses “unnecessary force” against civilians and “sometimes beat suspects,” the report claims.
On December 28, 2013, police and RRU forces opened fire on civilians protesting water shortages in Hargeisa, resulting in the deaths of two demonstrators, the report said.
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On November 15, Jama says that he and 28 opposition MPs were denied entry to parliament in an apparent attempt to influence a vote on a new speaker of the house. RRU and other state security forces numbering around 400 had occupied the building.
Jama described the November 15 incident as “the final demolition of the Somaliland democracy process.”
Warning shots were fired, five members of parliament were arrested, and two were “badly beaten” by police, Jama says. All were released without charge several hours later.
“They were trying to prevent people from voting,” he said.
The pre-arranged vote did not go ahead after MPs inside the House left in protest, and a quorum was not present.
The speaker of the House of Representatives told VICE News that the security forces attempted to disarm his bodyguards and refuse him entry as he approached parliament.
“Maybe a kilometer away from the House there was a checkpoint with a large number of security forces including the RRU,” Abdirahman Mohamed Abdullahi said. “In order to avoid a clash I decided to continue to my house. They are powerful now. Everybody is afraid.”
“We were very lucky we weren’t hurt,” Jama told VICE News. “The ruling party was very angry of the support we had in parts of Somaliland.”
Protests followed the military occupation of parliament, which, according to Jama, led to the deaths of at least three people.
“Whenever there is a protest in Somaliland, they don’t use water cannons, they don’t use rubber bullets. They use live bullets to disperse a crowd. Bullets kill people,” Jama said. “They fired indiscriminately into the crowds.”
Jama, who is also a British citizen and former teacher at a number of schools in the London borough of Harrow, said he was “ashamed” of the use of taxpayer money to fund the “oppressive” force.
“I urge the UK government to review its funding and support to the RRU,” he said.
UK terror suspect mocks police on twitter after skipping bail and fleeing to Syria. Read more here.
Britain’s counter-terrorism operations have recently come under scrutiny following an investigation by Al Jazeera that unearthed allegations by Kenyan anti-terror police that the UK provided training, equipment, and intelligence to an assassination squad that has carried out nearly 500 extrajudicial killings.
Somaliland receives millions in aid from the UK. The country declared independence from Somalia in 1991 and has been cautiously celebrated as a beacon of democracy within the fragile state, following five elections.
The UK government’s Department for International Development (DfID) describes it as “more stable than the rest of the country,” but states that development needs “remain high.” Journalists are regularly arrested and detained.
VICE News contacted Somaliland’s ruling Kulmiye party for comment but did not receive a response.
“We are not able to provide detail on our counter-terrorism program funding for operational security reasons, however any HMG funding is delivered in line with HMG’s Overseas Security and Assistance Guidance and is regularly reviewed to ensure compliance with international human rights,” a Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesperson said. “We believe that respect for human rights is an integral part of any effective approach to counter-terrorism.”
Follow Ben Bryant on Twitter: @benbryant
Sourve Vice News