60th anniversary of Canadian citizenship

Passport to a new country
60th anniversary of Canadian citizenship

Claire Young

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Life was becoming dangerous in Afghanistan. Sher Mohammad Mehri closed up the jewelry and goldsmithing shop he ran with some of his sons and fled to Pakistan with his family.

Mehri and his wife Mariam spent the next 10 years there as refugees, raising their 11 children and living with help from the Ismaili community. Then five years ago, almost the whole family moved to Calgary, sponsored by Sultan and Siara, a son and a daughter who had moved here a few years earlier. (One daughter, Humaira, lives in Toronto and another son, Sayed Ali, lives in the United Kingdom.)


“We left Afghanistan because of war,” Mehri said through his son, Faiz Ali, 29, as they waited for their citizenship ceremony to begin at the Chinese Cultural Centre in Chinatown. “There were too many different groups fighting. In order to save our lives and have a good future, we made it to Pakistan.”

In September, Mehri and seven of his 11 children became Canadian, swearing the oath of citizenship and receiving their Canadian documents from Citizenship Judge Raymond Lee.

“One of our dreams it came true, to be a citizen of Canada,” Faiz Ali said. “We’re on the happy side of life now. We all live together in a house with my mom and my kids.”

Complete at Calgary Herald

Author: ismailimail

Independent, civil society media featuring Ismaili Muslim community, inter and intra faith endeavors, achievements and humanitarian works.

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