Fida al-Sayed

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Fidaaldin Al-Sayed Issa (Arabic: فداء الدين السيد عيسى‎) born January 15, 1985[1] is a Syrian political activist who lives in Eskilstuna, Sweden[1][2]

Fida is the chairman of the Youth Coalition of March 15 and former spokesperson for the Facebook page "The Syrian Revolution". Fida is together with his father and siblings, one of the founders of the Office of the Damascus Declaration in Sweden back in 2008.[3] He has been named as infidel on Syrian TV several times. It has also been alleged that his Syrian citizenship has been withdrawn.[2]

According to Syrian press, Fida leads Sweden’s chapter of the Muslim Brotherhood.[2][4] Fida does not seem to dismiss these rumors. He even refers to the brotherhood in a conversation with Barada TV in February. It has also circulated on the Internet different pictures of Fida with senior members of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.[4]

Fida is a Swedish citizen and known as the imam of the Eskilstuna Mosque.[2][5] Fida is currently studying Sharia[6] combined with studies for a PhD in Innovation and Product Design at Mälardalen University and is active in the NGO Sweden’s Young Muslims.[2]

Background[edit]

Fida was born in "an Arab country".[2] He is the eldest child and has two brothers and a sister. His father Tarif was one of those imprisoned by al-Assad's security forces in Syria.[7] Fida said in an interview that about 16 children at ages 12–13, who wrote "Go away al-Assad" on a toilet wall in his school in Syria and then was arrested by security police. "When they returned, they were raped and had no fingernails left, they had been torn away."[7] The family moved to Sweden in 2001.[7] Fida went to High School at Rudbecksskolan in Stockholm[8] together with his sister Lina.[9] After 2010 Stockholm bombings he appeared in various local media in which he renounced terrorism and said that what happened in Stockholm was an evil act and evil acts can never be justified.[10]

"The Syrian Revolution"[edit]

Fida has together with his two younger brothers Mustafa and Yasir created the page "The Syrian Revolution" on Facebook[11] that has been identified as the most influential social networking tool in the mobilization of protestors during the Syrian uprising.[2]

In an interview on Nyhetsmorgon at TV4, Fida explained that when he started the page before the "revolution," people laughed at him and said that there will never be an uprising in Syria, while others supported the initiative. He pointed several times that it is a peaceful movement for freedom and democracy. He said that they did not have to do any marketing for the page, as the situation in Syria was marketing itself. He said he no longer administrates the page alone, he only founded it, and he now have the help of hundreds of young people in Syria.[12]

BBC Arabic showed in a special report how Fida run the page from his apartment in Eskilstuna. Fida explained that 75% of the administrators who run the site today are from within Syria. Fida also told that it is a difficult process before a video is approved and posted on the site: the event must has to be filmed and sent by various independent sources, even sometimes needed to be confirmed by filming the date on a local newspaper, or that some of the protesters show big signs where you can clearly see the week's campaign name.[13]

He called Sweden in interview with SVT to expel the Syrian ambassador. He said he has friends who were murdered because of an image or a video that they have sent to the page.[11] 65% of the readers of the site are surfing from Syria.[11]

On the question of military intervention in Syria, he replied "the people of Syria do not want military action. They want political and economic penalties on al-Assad's government, as well as tougher statement from the UN, EU and the larger organizations. They want the EU countries to expel Syrian ambassadors and recall their ambassadors from Damascus".[12]

He said he receives daily threatening letters in Swedish and Arabic. In response to the question of how long he intended to continue, Fida answered "until I die".[11]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "AL-SAYED ISSA, FIDAALDIN". Allabolag.se. 28 August 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Syrian Revolution 2011 Facebook page Administrator, Fidaaldin Al-Sayed Issa, Interviewed by Adam Almkvist". Joshua Landis. 11 May 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  3. ^ "الاجتماع التأسيسي لمكتب إعلان دمشق في السويد". thefreesyria.org. 21 February 2008. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  4. ^ a b "The Man behind "Syria Revolution 2011″ Facebook-Page Speaks Out". Joshua Landis. 24 April 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  5. ^ "Manifestation som tog avstånd från terrorvåldet". Folket.se. 20 December 2010. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  6. ^ "Stockholms Unga Muslimers temahelg!". socialisterna.org. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  7. ^ a b c "Muslimer, kristna – alla är med". socialisterna.org. 13 April 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  8. ^ "Fida Alsayed". Facebook. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  9. ^ "Lina Al-Sayed Issa". Facebook. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  10. ^ "Muslimer dödar inte". ekuriren.se. 18 December 2010. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  11. ^ a b c d "Om oroligheterna i Syrien". SVT. 2 August 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  12. ^ a b "Nyhetsmorgon - Så påverkar revolutionen i Libyen upproret i Syrien". TV4. 24 August 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011. 
  13. ^ "حصريا : أحمد الشيخ في غرفة عمليات الثورة السورية". BBC Arabic. 6 July 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2011.