Mikael Strandberg, a Swedish explorer: “No danger in Yemen”
Mikael Strandberg, 49, a Swedish explorer who has traveled to 125 countries, recently completed a 14-day journey by camel from Tehama and Zabid to Sana'a to "prove that Yemen is a safe country."
On Thursday, Strandberg arrived at the Old City of Sana'a with his Yemeni companion, Amin, and a camel laden with luggage and water bottles.
Even after such an arduous journey, he was very vigorous and energetic.
"Three years ago, I fell in love with this fantastic country and its people," he said while surrounded by hundreds of Yemeni onlookers in the Old City of Sana'a.
"The reason I came here this time was that I heard so much negative information about Yemen," he added, before describing Yemen as a fantastic country.
Strandberg decided to start a journey to show the world that there is no danger in Yemen.
"I've done it. There is no danger, no problem and I proved that Yemen is safe," he said. "Ninety-nine percent of Yemenis are hospitable, kind and helpful."
He indicated that Yemen has a potential for growth and conveyed a message to Yemenis, saying: "You have everything and you can lead your country towards becoming the richest country in the world."
Strandberg faced several difficulties and challenges during his journey. "A lack of water and food and the hot weather were the biggest problems," he said.
He said however that the people he met along the way were very cooperative and kind. He was surprised when anonymous people provided him with food and water in his tent.
Strandberg named his daughter Bilquis to honor Yemen and express his love for the country.
"You can find everything in Yemen. It's never boring," he said. "I admire Yemenis. They are still kind and generous despite their suffering and and despite a difficult situation.”