Human Rights

Mosul: Hero Who Saved Eight People Dies Rescuing Ferry Disaster Victims


When a ferry capsized in Mosul last Friday, Mohammed dived into the water to rescue people. After saving eight people Mohammed died of exhaustion trying to rescue a ninth person. His family, friends and city have labelled him a hero.

Despite the defeat of terrorism in Iraq the people of Mosul have continued to face tragedies due to the absence of planned reconstruction and poor governance. During the Nowruz festivities that took place last week, over 100 people drowned when a river ferry carrying over 170 people capsized in the Tigris River.

As the tragedy was unfolding, several people from Mosul took it upon themselves to try and save those who were affected by this event.

Mohammed Jassim, a young man from Sinjar who was displaced to Mosul after ISIS invaded his city, attempted to save people who had fallen into the river. After rescuing eight people, Mohammed became tired and overwhelmed by the water and ended up giving his life while attempting to save a ninth person.

“I told him that the ferry had overturned and people were drowning,” said Sa’ad Jassim, Mohammed’s brother. “He told me that we couldn’t stay here and that we had to go and save people. He rescued eight people and then drowned. We are proud of our martyred brother; he is not only our martyr but the martyr of the entire province of [Nineveh and] Mosul.”

Mohammed’s story touched the hearts of many locals, who now see him as the hero and source of pride for the city.

“We thank [Mohammed] for what he did for his city, his people, and his family,” said Bareq al-Mitwiti, a member of Mohammed’s tribe.

To this day, dozens of families are trying to locate their loved ones who were on board the ferry when it sank. While many were able to find their relatives and children, others are still waiting to discover the fate of their loved ones.

“We have been sleeping on the street for three days, our houses are close, but we will not go home,” said Younis Zeidan, a cousin of a missing child. “We want to know the fate of our son and do not want anything else.”

Following the events that took place, the Iraqi Government have taken several measures to find the missing citizens in addition to seeking accountability for those responsible for this unfortunate incident.

This led to the arrest of the ferry owner who did not take into consideration any safety measures while boarding people, in addition to sacking the Governor of Mosul, who has shown incompetence in administrating services in the city.

While an investigation is still taking place in Mosul, citizens are left mourning the 100 lives that their city prematurely lost.