Relief and hope for a better future for 38 year old Sudanese Ahmed Murtada who says he now has a reason to smile.
Ahmed was among 87 migrants rescued by the Proactiva Open Arms boat on August 2 after a boat he and his 13 year old son were boarded to Spain, broke down in the Mediterranean at night.
Ahmed said he paid 2000 dinars, almost 5,000 dollars to board the dinghy in Libya after escaping from his kidnappers in Sabratha.
He said there were moments of panic and fear, when the Open Arms approached their aimless dinghy because they were afraid the vessel could be a Libyan coast guard boat.
“I don’t want to lose this moment, this is a good, good moment for me, because the last many days are very angry but now I am happy, my life is going to change. Everything is going to change now. Everything is going to change”, Ahmed said.
Aboard the Open Arms on his one-week voyage to the safe port of Algeciras in southern Spain, Ahmed yearns to do good to society.
“ I want to be a great man, I want to be a man everybody knows in the world. I want to do something good before I die. I’m trying to find …, to help my family in my country. I am trying now to do things I have to do,” he added.
Ahmed and the other 86 rescued migrants including 12 minors, arrived in Spain on Thursday and were taken to a temporary built center.
They have the option to apply for asylum, while those seen as economic migrants are deported to their countries of origin, according to Spanish law.
Spain, has overtaken Italy as the preferred destination for refugees. It has registered almost 21,000 migrants so far this year, almost more than in the whole of last year, according to figures compiled by the International Organization for Migration.