Featured in the Wall Street Journal. Article by Miriam Jordan and Joseph De Avila.
After his teenage sons were whipped by Syrian troops and he was beaten by forces loyal to the country’s president, Mohamad Almohsen decided he needed to flee the civil war tearing his homeland apart. That was in April 2012. The burly truck driver trekked by foot with his wife and four children over two days to reach Jordan, where he connected with United Nations aid workers. Three years and a litany of background screenings later, he came to America.
“We are so happy and relieved to be here,” said Mr. Almohsen, 45 years old, who arrived in Dearborn, Mich., in September, one of an estimated 2,290 Syrian refugees admitted into the U.S. since 2011. “Our future is now a lot brighter.”
The journey of Mr. Almohsen illustrates the multistep process—including interviews with U.N. and U.S. officials, security checks and medical exams—that Syrian refugees must undergo to be allowed to enter the U.S.
Mr. Almohsen arrived in Michigan with his wife and four sons Sept. 2 to an apartment furnished with donated items by the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, a resettlement agency. His eldest son found a job as a machine operator. The other sons started school.
Mr. Almohsen and his wife are learning English, and he gets around town on a used bicycle. He plans to take his driver’s license test in order to start working, he said.