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Zaoui's 'normal life' in Palmerston North NZ

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Zaoui's 'normal life' in Palmerston North NZ

Post by Kiwigran on Wed Mar 25, 2009 5:39 am

Zaoui's 'normal life' in Palmerston North

By GRANT MILLER - The Manawatu Standard
Last updated 12:45 25/03/2009

MURRAY WILSON/Manawatu Standard
RIGHT AT HOME: New Palmerston North resident Ahmed Zaoui.

New Zealand's most recognisable and controversial refugee, Ahmed Zaoui, has chosen Palmerston North as his new home.

Palmerston North is "99 per cent like my city" Medea, he said, a place the Algerian refugee and his family haven't seen since 1992.
Mr Zaoui was amazed at the similarity between the Manawatu Gorge and a gorge near Medea. He was attracted by Palmerston North's reputation for knowledge and described the city as welcoming. Its people were kind, he said.
Palmerston North made him homesick.
Medea, a city of about 125,000 people, was colder and not as flat, however.
Mr Zaoui said his family had settled in Palmerston North well.
"I thank God I'm a free man. I want to live a normal life like anyone else," he said.
He believed Palmerston North would be better than his previous home, Auckland, for his wife Leila Tidjani and their four sons.
Mr Zaoui, once branded a security risk to New Zealand (an assessment he fought for five years) is to study conflict resolution at Massey University next semester.
He is also working part-time for the Manawatu Muslim Association as its community co-ordinator, liaising with other faiths.


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Registration date : 2009-03-22
Location : New Zealand

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