THIS STORY WAS UPDATED
It’s been close to five months after Keyse Abdifata Maalesh, 18, lost his life at the Kannelmäki train station of Helsinki on April 26 when he was stabbed by a white Finn. Less than a week ago on September 14, the suspect was handed a five-year prison sentence for involuntary manslaughter.
Ilhan Jama is the mother of the deceased Keyse. She said that she and her husband are not happy with the sentence, which she believes was a hate crime.
“The prosecutor tried to get a hate crime pinned on the suspect,” she said. “The person [who stabbed my son] alleged that he was scared by my son’s presence, or that a dark-skinned person was walking towards him down the stairs.”
Jama considers the excuse for stabbing her son quite incredible. She said that the stabber and his friend were both intoxicated, according to Jama.
“The incident happened in 20 seconds,” she continues. “They just walked by [the suspect and his friend]. The man said something to my son and it was over.”
Keyse was supposed to meet a friend at the Kannelmäki train station. When the girl, who was on the same train as the attacker and friend, both said something unfriendly to her but she does not recall what they said exactly.
The man who was sentenced for involuntary manslaughter told Keyse’s parents that he didn’t mean to kill him and asked for forgiveness.
According to Jama, who suffered a miscarriage in the same week, her husband plans to appeal the sentence. It depends, however, on what the prosecutor does, she said.
Both are unhappy with the sentence.
Jama, who moved to Finland as a child over thirty years ago and lives today a day at a time, believes that her son would be alive today if her parents would not have moved to this country.
“In light of what happened to my son, it proves that Finland is a challenging country for foreigners to live even if you were born here,” she said, adding that the trial had taught her that a dark-skinned person could not get justice.
“Now I know that this country is only for [white] Finns,” Jama continued. “It’s their country [not ours].”
Jama said that there is little you can do if the system is stacked against you.
“If a few persons harass you in public, then you can defend yourself,” she added. “You can’t do that when you are up against the system.”