By Markku Aikomus
MAHAJANGA, Madagascar – Since he was 15, Ibrahim Ickbal, a 50-year-old father of two, has worked in the same jewellery shop in the city of Mahajanga, on Madagascar’s northern coast. Although he barely earns enough to rent the two-room house he shares with his wife and children, he considers himself lucky to have a job of any kind.
Ibrahim belongs to Madagascar’s Karana community, an ethnic minority group. Although his family arrived in Madagascar from India more than a century ago, Ibrahim does not possess Malagasy nationality. Like a significant portion of the Karana in Madagascar, and like his father before him, he is stateless.