The 14-year-old was arrested earlier this year for bringing a suspicious-looking homemade clock to school. A picture of a scared high-school freshman in handcuffs quickly circulated the Internet, and his story went viral. It prompted a social media campaign from many who believed his arrest was the result of racism and Islamophobia, and they tweeted their support along with the hashtag #IStandWithAhmed.
President Obama was one of those who stood with Ahmed and even invited the teen to meet him at the White House; his visit took place the day before his family’s announcement.
Some people have claimed that Ahmed knew what he was doing by bringing the clock to school, and it was a ploy for attention. Understandably, this is one of the reasons he no longer wants to attend school in America. He was offered a full ride to the Young Innovators Program at the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, and his family will be relocating to the city of Doha so that he can attend.
Ahmed’s sister, Eyman, described the capital city to the Washington Post as “Texas in Qatar.” It’s a modern city with various American campuses, but the only major difference, according to Eyman, is that the Mohamed family will live among Muslims like themselves.