A Bosnian Muslim pilgrim who left in December 2011 for the pilgrimage to Makkah by foot arrived for the 2012 Hajj after passing through seven countries including war-torn Syria. Senad Hadzic, 47, said:
“I arrived Saturday in Makkah. I am not tired, these are the best days of my life,”
He had covered 5,700 kilometres (3,540 miles) in 314 days of walking through Bosnia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Syria and Jordan to Makkah, Saudi Arabia, with a backpack weighing 20 kilos (44 pounds).
He recorded his progress on his Facebook page, where he posted a picture apparently of an entry/exit card for foreigners issued by the Syrian interior ministry. Hadzic was quoted as saying:
“I passed through Syria in April. I walked some 500 kilometres in 11 days. I went through Aleppo and Damascus and passed dozens of check-points held by pro-government and rebel forces alike, but I was never detained..”
“At a check-point held by (President Bashar) al-Assad’s forces the soldier ordered me to empty my backpack… When I showed them my Quran and explained I was making the pilgrimage on foot, they let me go.”
He also added:
“I walked in the name of Allah, for Islam, for Bosnia-Hercegovina, for my parents and my sister.”
On his Facebook page he said Allah had shown him the way in dreams, including to go through Syria instead of Iraq. During the pilgrimage, Hadzic faced temperatures ranging from minus 35 Celsius in Bulgaria to plus 44 Celsius in Jordan. He said he had to wait in Istanbul for several weeks to get permission to cross the Bosphorus Bridge on foot and two months at the border between Jordan and Saudi Arabia to obtain an entry visa.
Masjid An Nabawi Courtyard, Madina, Saudi Arabia
Masha Allah! May Allah reward him for his determination and efforts.