Syrians will feel ‘in prison in Ballaghaderreen’ –

A contributor to a new Pakistani newspaper claims sending Syrian asylum-seekers to Ballaghaderreen is like sending them to prison.

Mohammed Aslam claims the town is like a ‘desert’, with no jobs, activity or leisure centre, and that the Syrians will feel ‘punished’ in the area.

Last week, the first edition of Leader News was published, a monthly free-newspaper that’s written in both Urdu and English.

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It covers seven counties, including Roscommon and Longford, with several articles about Ballaghaderreen, most of which was were written by Mohammed Aslam.

He lives in Manchester and Leitrim village, but has also resided in Frenchpark.

In an interview with Shannonside FM, he strongly criticised Ballaghaderreen, calling for a mosque and leisure to be built.

He also claims that some estate-agents in Ireland are racist.

Seventy-one Syrian asylum-seekers are due to arrive at the Abbeyfield Hotel Eroc Centre this week, but Mr Aslam claims the town is unsuitable for them.

Speaking on Let’s Talk today, Ballaghaderreen resident and former councillor Michael Scally agreed with one point Mr Aslam made.

However, he denies the town has no facilities.