‘It feels like I’ve moved to Afghanistan’: Inside the Sydney suburb divided by an influx of 6,000 Iraqi and Syrian
refugees Mohammedans as some locals fear their town is becoming a ‘Middle Eastern slum’… but others spring to their defence
- Fairfield in Sydney’s south-west could become Iraqi and Syrian slum, locals say
- The suburb has been hit with an influx of refugees from the war-torn countries
- One Australian woman claims she feels like she is living in a foreign country
- A long-time resident fears the area will ‘become a Middle-Eastern enclave’
- But the refugees claim they are happy in Fairfield and feel safe in the suburb
- This comes after NSW Labor leader Luke Foley blames refugees for ‘white flight’
Is Western Sydney now a Middle Eastern ghetto?
This is not integration.
Jasmin, 22, told Daily Mail Australia she has lived in and around Fairfield, in Sydney‘s south west, all of her life but she is beginning to feel like she is the foreigner.
More shops have popped up in town offering Halal options – and sporting Arabic writing
‘It is so f***ing s**t I feel like I don’t live in Sydney anymore – everyone just speaks Arabic, it feels like I have moved to Afghanistan.’
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Jasmin, who requested her surname not to be published, spoke out after NSW Opposition leader Luke Foley claimed the influx of 6,000 refugees from Syria and Iraq was leading to ‘white flight’ from the area.
‘I’m saying, what about that middle ring of suburbs that have experienced, if anything, just a slow decline. In terms of employment, in terms of white flight – where many Anglo families have moved out?’
Mr Foley added: ‘I’m not prepared to see the people of those suburbs denied opportunities that are taken for granted elsewhere.’
An Iraqi shop assistant, who didn’t want to be named for fear of losing his job, agreed the area was becoming a hot-bed for Middle Eastern refugees.
‘You can’t get a job in here unless you speak Arabic – because 90 percent of our customers only speak Arabic – it is getting too much.’
Jasmin, left, said the Foley government should send the foreigners in her town back to their own countries
Wasan, pictured holding a holy book cover and a coffee set, has been in Australia for four years – she came from Iraq and got a job in retail because of her bi-lingual skills – she speaks English and Arabic
Shops offering 22 carat gold in traditional Middle-Eastern styles have also popped up in town
A sign of the main street where Arabic writing and English writing work side by side
The man has been in Australia for four years after leaving his own war-torn country.
‘It honestly isn’t right – most people here now are from Iraq or Syria,’ he said.
Another man, Neville Stephenson, an 83-year-old from the Fairfield council area said he avoids going into the city’s main street and shopping district.
‘It is too crowded – and I am really worried the area will be the slums of tomorrow.
Neville Stephenson, an 83-year-old from the Fairfield council area said he fears the area will become the slums of tomorrow following the influx of refugees
‘It is too crowded – and I am really worried the area will be the slums of tomorrow,’ a man said
‘It is turning into a Middle-Eastern enclave and it feels like we have been targeted by them – so now they all want to come here,’ a local man said
‘It is turning into a Middle-Eastern enclave and it feels like we have been targeted by them – so now they all want to come here,’ he said.
Some of the older Syrian, Iraqi and Iranian men meet every morning to play cards and dominoes in the main street.
They revealed how they escaped their damaged countries to find ‘bliss’ in Australia.
Adam Sorayan, 88, has been in Australia for one year and one month, he was ‘forced out of Iraq for being a Christian’.
‘It was dangerous and there was nothing but trouble for me because I wasn’t a Muslim,’ he said.
Some of the older Syrian, Iraqi and Iranian men meet every morning to play cards and dominos in the main street