UM-D honors Paris, Beirut victims with candlelight vigil

Photo by Zeinab Najm. University of Michigan-Dearborn candlelight vigil attendees honor victims lost in terrorist attacks in Beirut, Paris and around the world as Social Justice League member and UM-D senior Mohammed Alziyadi (right) tells a story at the University Center Patio Nov. 16.

Photo by Zeinab Najm. University of Michigan-Dearborn candlelight vigil attendees honor victims lost in terrorist attacks in Beirut, Paris and around the world as Social Justice League member and UM-D senior Mohammed Alziyadi (right) tells a story at the University Center Patio Nov. 16.

By ZEINAB NAJM
Times-Herald Newspapers

DEARBORN — A candlelight vigil was held for victims affected by the terrorist attacks in Beirut, Paris and around the world at the University of Michigan-Dearborn Nov. 16.

Students, residents and UM-D staff gathered at the University Center Patio to light candles in memory of those affected by recent tragedies in other countries.

Campus organizations such as the Social Justice League, the Muslim Students’ Association, Students for Islamic Awareness, Lebanese Student Association and Pakistani Students Association hosted the vigil for the innocent lives lost.

The vigil focused not only on the violent incidents in Beirut and Paris, but also Mexico, Syria, Iraq and earthquakes in Japan.

The Islamic State’s double bombing in Beirut Nov. 12 claimed the lives of 44 people and left 250 injured.

In Paris Nov. 13, multiple coordinated Islamic State terrorist attacks killed almost 130 people and injured 400.

During the vigil, students, SJL members and professors all told stories or gave speeches on the recent international issues and attacks.

SJL member and UM-D senior Mohammed Alziyadi, told the story about how his cousin was killed by the Islamic State last year.

“They killed him and would send the family his body piece by piece,” Alziyadi said. “Every 10 days they would send a pice and by the 40th day we had the full body to bury.”

Henry Ford College freshman Hassan Ghamlouch attended the vigil and took the time to recite a poem regarding the attacks.

SJL secretary Rayann Yassine game a speech about the value of the human life and the need for solidarity within the community.

Michigan 15th District candidate Brian Stone was in attendance to speak about the terrorist attacks and Dearborn.

Stone graduated from Dearborn High School and UM-D and served in the U.S Navy from 2008 to 2012.

“Dearborn is a unique place and we need to realize that,” he said. “We have to decide what kind of world we want to live in and what we can do to achieve it with change.”

Other students and attendees took the time to honor the victims lost and all affected by the incidents in Beirut, Paris, Mexico, Syria, Iraq, Japan and the rest of the world.

Candles were lit and a moment of silence along with a prayer was held for all victims lost followed by a blowing out of the candles.

Alziyadi thanked everyone for attending the vigil, which was planned on short notice.

“The only way to beat terrorism is with love and unity,” he said. “Tonight is just a small example of that can be done to show how strong our community is.”

(Zeinab Najm can be reached at zeinabnajm92.com.)

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