You may remember Ahmed Mohamed from last September. He was the 14-year-old student whose homemade alarm clock landed him in handcuffs after teachers feared he was holding a homemade explosive device.
Now, a little more than a month later, Ahmed Mohamed and his family plan to move to Qatar as a direct result of the incident.
When the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development offered Ahmed Mohamed a paid scholarship into its Young Innovators Program, the Mohamed family eagerly accepted. According to its website, the Qatar Foundation’s Young Innovators Program “strives to attract bright young Arab minds and talent, and to enable gifted youth to reach their full potential.”
Since the incident, young Ahmed has visited the headquarters of Google, Facebook and a number of other institutions. He’s also visited Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide and war crimes in Darfur.
The boy’s father, Elhassan Mohamed, once ran for president of Sudan (against al-Bashir, interestingly enough). The elder Mohamed feels that the alarm clock was mistaken for a bomb due to a prevalent intolerance towards Muslims in American society. He hopes the relocation to Qatar results in his family “being accepted by that country.”
Ahmed Mohamed accepted a White House invitation and spoke to President Obama personally. During the visit, Mohamed pointed out that people should be judged on their heart, and not by how they looked.
The soon-to-be Qatari citizen spent a mere 20 minutes assembling the fateful alarm clock on a Sunday night.
What Do You Think?
I’d love to hear your opinions on whether Ahmed Mohamed should’ve been charged as well as your reaction on the family moving out of the country to Qatar.