News / Africa

Stowaway's Mother Wants to Reunite With Her Kids

Flight path for plane carrying stowaway.
Flight path for plane carrying stowaway.
VOA News
The mother of Yahya Abdi, the Somali-American teen, who stowed away in the wheel well of a Hawaii-bound flight from California, says her son was trying to reach her in Africa.

Speaking to VOA's Somali service from “Sheed Dheer” a refugee camp in eastern Ethiopia, Ubah Mohamed Abdulle, expressed shock and said she burst into tears when she heard the news of her son’s miraculous trip.

“I felt bad that he risked his life,” she told VOA. “ I was told that he did this because of me.”

She said Yahya Abdi, had recently learned that she was alive, after being told by his father that she was dead.
 
Hawaiian Airlines Flight 45 arrives from San Jose, Calif., in Kahului Airport in Kahului, Hawaii, on April 21, 2014.Hawaiian Airlines Flight 45 arrives from San Jose, Calif., in Kahului Airport in Kahului, Hawaii, on April 21, 2014.
x
Hawaiian Airlines Flight 45 arrives from San Jose, Calif., in Kahului Airport in Kahului, Hawaii, on April 21, 2014.
Hawaiian Airlines Flight 45 arrives from San Jose, Calif., in Kahului Airport in Kahului, Hawaii, on April 21, 2014.
U.S. investigators say the 16-year-old boy snuck onto an airport tarmac in San Jose, California, and climbed into the wheel well of a Hawaiian Airlines plane.
 
Investigators say he managed to survive extremely low temperatures and low oxygen during the more than five-hour flight to Hawaii, where he was taken into custody and hospitalized.

The mother is appealing to the U.S. government and other international organizations to help her reunite with her kids including Yahya Abdi.

She accused the father of her son, of mistreating her kids.

“I am a mom who feels the pain of her fragmented family, some people told me how bad they [my kids] were treated,” she alleged, adding that for years, she has been denied phone access to her kids.

“They were even told that I was dead, but they recently found out that I was alive," she explained.

Abdullahi said she is divorced from the boy's father, Abdilahi Yusuf Abdi, who lives in California with Yahya Abdi and the former couple's other two children.
 
Abdilhi Abdi spoke to VOA's Somali service in an exclusive interview, Wednesday. He said his son frequently talks about going back to Africa "where his grandparents still live."
 
Abdullahi said before Sunday's incident, she had not heard anything about her children since 2006. She said her former husband had traveled to Mogadishu and took the children away without her knowledge.

Abdullahi said she had sought help from a man who knows her family and he had recently informed the children that she is alive.
 
When asked what she was planning to do now, she responded “My dream is to live with them [my children], and when I get that, it’s going to fulfill my ultimate dream of having my family [by my side]."

Abdullahi said she wants to live with her children in the United States because "Somalia is not safe to go back to."

VOA Somali service's Mohamud Ali contributed to this report

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs