”I’ve paid with my blood for freedom of speech”
Sofyan has already learnt Swedish at class 9-level, on his own. Now he is studying at upper high-school level.
– It really isn’t easy. I work all day and study in the evenings, I don’t have time for anything else.
”She said that it isn’t impossible, but but language is the key that opens all the doors. That made me start to take my Swedish studies seriously”Sofyan Aswad, after a meeting with Anna-Kerstin Larsson
He interviewed the municipal council’s grand old lady, Anna-Kerstin Larsson (L) at the Town Hall, wherer he talked about his dream of becoming a TV-reporter in Sweden. Or even prime minister.
– She said that it isn’t impossible, but but language is the key that opens all the doors. That made me start to take my Swedish studies seriously.
Sofyan was born in Syria, in Aleppo, one of the oldest towns in the world. A great deal of the town has been destroyed during the war.
– I love Aleppo, says Sofyan with sadness in his voice.
”I was shot at because of freedom of speech.They saw that I was a reporter. I paid for the words with my blood”Sofyan Aswad
Sofyan studied journalism at the University of Beirut and graduated in 2011.
– The obvious thing to do was to return home. I started working as a video reporter for a website which was controlled by Sana, the state-owned news agency.
He studied to become a war correspondent, then went back home, to the war.
– I don’t really know why. I was young, I enjoyed the excitement, and soon became well-known, he says with a smile and a shrug of his shoulders.
He worked for an Iraqi channel in a war zone. One day he was shot in the chest by a sniper. Sofyan shows us the scar near his heart.
– It penetrated three centimetres deep. Without the metal sheet in my body armour, I’d be dead. I spent two months in hospital.
– I was shot at because of freedom of speech.They saw that I was a reporter. I paid for the words with my blood.
In one area he filmed without permission. He had seen how a number of missiles that killed civilians had come from that direction. The video was published, and he was imprisoned by the security police.
– They said I was spying for the opposition. I was in prison for 120 days.
When the fighting intensified, he fled, arrived in Sweden in December 2015 and applied for asylum.
– I just lazed around at home doing nothing – it was a difficult time. One day I was at the hospital and caught sight of Kb Mosaik lying on a table. I realised that here was something I wanted to be involved in.
Lives: in Kristianstad, comes from Syria.
Famiy: wife, mother and two brothers now living in France.
Occupation: journalist. Has worked at Kb Mosaik since April 2017. Dreams of working as a TV-reporter.
Spare time: studies Swedish at upper high-school level. Smokes a hookah. Rides at Hammarslund riding school.