A month and a half has passed since Sajid Hussain disappeared in Sweden and the police have still not been able to find out what has happened to him. The fact that he went missing in a European country is a source of grave concern for his friends and family. But it should be worrisome for the Swedish authorities too as it was under their watch that he went missing.
What does it say, one might wonder, about the police of a country that is famous for its rule of law and security that a high profile journalist could suddenly vanish without trace and is not found after this many days. Nothing can be said for sure at the moment, but if he has been abducted, this could encourage potential criminals to get even bolder next time considering the State’s response has not been as swift as many expected.
Last year, Sajid was granted refugee status by the country’s immigration, acknowledging that his life was at risk because of his work as a journalist. This should have made the police specially concerned about his disappearance.
Sajid Hussain, like many others from Balochistan, chose Sweden as his home and placed his trust in the Swedish government, hoping he would be protected. After his disappearance and the slow pace of the police investigation, journalists and Baloch refugees, who previously felt protected, are now fearing for their safety.
One of the reasons refugees leave everything behind and come to Europe is that they want to feel safe. The thought that they could possibly be harmed with impunity even in a democratic country such as Sweden has created a sense of fear among them. There are many who are living and working in the country in similar circumstances as Sajid Hussain. So, in such an environment, it’s imperative that the investigators leave no stone unturned in finding him. That’s what is expected of them.
We should, however, clarify here that we are not blaming anyone. But simply share our worry that the longer it takes the authorities to find him the more at risk he is. We also understand that the police are not obliged to share the progress, if any, in the investigation. It’s just that we, like his family, had expected that a well-equipped modern police force like Sweden’s would at least make some visible breakthrough in the case by now. We hope they do that and soon. Once more, we offer our help in the investigation should they need it.