Author Shares His Story About Living in Syria, Fleeing His Country

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Author Jamal Saeed shared his story in an event hosted by the Watertown Refugee Support Group (Contributed Photo)

The following piece was provided by the Watertown Citizens Refugee Support Group:

On Tuesday, May 28 at the Watertown Free Public Library, audiences were treated to an inspiring evening with Syrian writer, editor, artist, activist and humanitarian, Jamal Saeed. Saeed spoke about his published memoir, “My Road From Damascus,” which describes fond memories of growing up in Syria, alternating with descriptions of the unimaginable pain he suffered during 12 years of torture in Syrian prisons under the Assad regime.

In 2013 he fled with his wife and two sons first to Dubai, and then emigrated to Canada in 2016, where they were embraced and supported by a Canadian writers organization. They are now permanent residents of Kingston, Ontario.

Rufaida al Khabbaz reads excerpts from her husband’s memoir. (Contributed Photo)

In addition to learning about the family’s journey, Jamal’s wife, poet/translator Rufaida al Khabbaz also offered expert, dramatic reading of excerpts from her husband’s memoir. Attendees were especially moved by Saeed’s recounting of the struggle to heal deeply from trauma, and to “purify” himself in order to overcome any lingering hatred of his torturers.

This event was presented by Watertown Citizens Refugee Support Group, a working group of Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice & the Environment,

The audience at the Watertown Refugee Support Group at the Watertown Library on May 28. (Contributed Photo)

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