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Somali diaspora happily chooses Turkey

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Sunday September 19, 2021 - 03:40:03 in Latest News by Super Admin
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    Somali diaspora happily chooses Turkey

    Sunatimes.com - Dissatisfied with the living conditions in Western countries due to religious and cultural challenges as well as the legal and life obstacles faced in Gulf states, a lot of Somalis are in search of a location that respects their tradi

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Sunatimes.com - Dissatisfied with the living conditions in Western countries due to religious and cultural challenges as well as the legal and life obstacles faced in Gulf states, a lot of Somalis are in search of a location that respects their traditions and preferences.
To that end, in the last 10 years, Turkey has become the best choice for some Somalis. Turkey has multiple factors that attract perplexed Somali families. Looking at their motivations for coming to Turkey, the Somali diaspora in the country can be divided into three parts; families who prefer Turkey for living, individuals coming for business opportunities and those coming for short-term reasons, such as health and tourism. When considering the overall reasons Somalis come to Turkey, the factors below can be stated.


Firstly, the historic trip of Erdo─čan to Somalia in 2011 and the subsequent bold steps taken by Turkey in support of Somalia unleashed a mixed sense of pride and joy but also resentment toward other external players for their inaction in terms of state-building.

In the first years that followed the trip, highly regarded visits were exchanged by the officials of the two countries. Also, numerous conferences and forums on Somali issues were held in Istanbul, some organized by the Turkish government and others by Somali civil society. It's fair to say this massive level of state and societal interaction paved the way for Somali academics, journalists, businesspeople and politicians to learn about life in Turkey.

Being a Muslim expat in Turkey
Secondly, being a Muslim country with rich Islamic history and monumental Islamic sites endows Turkey with credit in comparison to other countries. The country is full of historical monumental Islamic sites, such as magnificent historical mosques, museums and palaces.

Also, one of the heart-touching factors worth mentioning is the call to prayer, or the adhan, from the spires of more than 3,000 mosques in Istanbul. The call dominates any other sound nearby and creates a sense of pride, passion and kind of belonging for a lot of Somalis who come to Turkey for the first time.

The religious feeling is amplified high when Somalis remember the epic support that Ottomans extended to them in their fight against their Christian neighbor (Abyssinia) in the 14th century under the leadership of Ahmad ibn Ibrahim al-Ghazi known, known as Ahmed Gurey in Somali. Understandably, Somalis have respect for Turkey due to this history.

Third, the cost of living in Turkey is relatively affordable for the Somalis from Western countries and generally for those of the middle-class who mainly come from Somalia. For example, the rent of the houses in Turkey is low compared to Nairobi, Cairo, Kuala Lumpur or even cheaper than rentals in some parts of Mogadishu. For the middle-class Somali families, it's convenient to settle in Istanbul or Ankara and enjoy decent living standards for more or less the same cost as in Somalia.


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