“Terrorists threatened to kill me, so I fled”

Published: 25 November 2015 23:26 CET

By John Engedal Nissen, IFRC

Zakaria Murady worked until recently in a private, foreign bank in the province of Kunduz in Afghanistan. Soon after the violence broke out in his province, the 25-year-old started to get death threats. "Terrorists were calling me and said they would kill me when they found me. So I decided to flee,” he said.

Murady left Afghanistan 24 days ago and the journey has been rough. He was forced to take the same risk as thousands of other refugees by making the harrowing sea crossing between Turkey and Greece. “When I crossed the sea to Greece, I witnessed another boat sinking. Everyone died,” he said.

No other way

“The situation for refugees is not good. For 99 per cent of the time, the journey is very dangerous but we have no other way to safety. We think, ‘maybe we will reach Europe, maybe we will die at sea’”

At the centre in Slavonski Brod in Croatia Murady received emergency supplies from the Red Cross together with thousands of other migrants. Every day up to 300 volunteers and staff from the Croatian Red Cross distribute food, water and donated clothing. Red Cross offers tracing services to reconnect families and gives psychological support to people suffering from trauma or distress. Heated rooms are also provided for the most vulnerable, while tents, toilets and shower facilities are also available and a team of medics are on hand to provide treatment.

Murady hopes he is on the way to safety in Europe and the chance to live a life away from death threats.

“If a country accepts me, I will continue my life there. I cannot do that in Afghanistan. I do not believe there will be peace in my country for the next 100 years,” he said.