Washington: Barely 24 hours after Ahmed Mohammed Al-Hassan - the 14-year-old US Muslim teen who was arrested and handcuffed for his clock which was mistaken as 'bomb', met US president Barack Obama at White House, his father announced that the family was moving to Qatar where his kids can learn and study with liberty.
"We are going to move to a place where my kids can study and learn, and all of them being accepted by that country," his father Mohammed Al-Hassan, an American of Sudanese origin, said.
In a statement released to media, Mohammed Al-Hassan said the family recieved many offers from different countries, but they found the one by Qatar as the best.
“After careful consideration of all the generous offers received, we would like to announce that we have accepted a kind offer from Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF) for Ahmed to join the prestigious QF Young Innovators Program, which reflects the organization’s on-going dedication to empowering young people and fostering a culture of innovation and creativity", he said.
Ahmed was a regular 14-year-old Muslim high school student in Irving, Texas, until Sept. 16, when he brought a clock to school to impress his engineering teacher. Another teacher thought it looked like a bomb, the school called the police and Mohamed was arrested.
After Ahmed was seen in a NASA T-shirt in handcuffs, the Twitter hashtag #IStandWithAhmed trended globally and was cited in praise from Google co-founder Sergey Brin and Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg.
No charges were filed and police said they were reviewing their actions in the case. But, the 14-year-old was fingerprinted before his release, and the clock for which he was arrested confiscated.
“I loved the city of Doha because it’s so modern. I saw so many amazing schools there, many of them campuses of famous American universities. The teachers were great. I think I will learn a lot and have fun too", the statement included one quote from Ahmed - the US teen.
"I was really impressed with everything that Qatar Foundation has to offer and the campuses are really cool", Ahmed Mohamed said.
Ahmed’s sister Eyman said the Middle East won’t feel too different from the US, except that the family will be surrounded by Muslims like themselves.
“Qatar is in the Arab world, but it also feels like Texas. It’s like Texas in Qatar", she added.
Qatar's Education City is a five square-mile site with satellite campuses of American schools such as Georgetown University, Northwestern University, Carnegie Mellon University, Virginia Commonwealth University and Texas A&M University.
Ahmed along with his family went to Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah in Makkah earlier this month, and later met with US President Obama on Monday. The teen was among 300 visitors to “Astronomy Night,” a celebration of science and learning.
Though some of those students received shoutouts during President Obama’s comments, there was no mention of Ahmed in the audience. That didn’t stop reporters from shouting to him from behind the rope lines: “Ahmed! How are you feeling?”