Syrian Refugee Family Fears Dispute Connected to Massive House Fire in Mississauga

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A Syrian refugee family has "lost everything" in a massive house fire that rocked a Mississauga townhouse complex in the Bloor and Dixie area on the morning of Oct. 7 and they fear a strange Friday night confrontation might have had something to do with the blaze.

A recent CP24 article reports that police are looking into whether an incident that occurred just hours before the fire, which gutted Khaled Alawad's home (along with several others in the complex), is connected to the blaze.

Alawad told CP24 that an irate man came to his home around 5:00 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 6 and accused him of stealing a bicycle.

Alawad said he told the man that the bike belonged to him and had been acquired six months ago, but "couldn't reason with him." He went on to tell the news outlet that the man made disparaging remarks about Syrians and refugees and attempted to push his way into the door.

Alawad told CP24 that he managed to keep the man from entering his home and promptly called police, but the man reportedly fled the scene before officers arrived.

Another resident told CP24 that she heard the Friday night confrontation and fears the argument and subsequent fire could be connected.

Alawad told the news outlet that he has "lost everything," including Halloween costumes he recently bought for his three children.

He said he had never seen or met the man who confronted him before.

Although no serious injuries were reported in connection with the fire, it took fire crews five hours to extinguish the flames. Two firefighters were transported to hospital for minor injuries and have since been released.

Alawad has set up a Go Fund Me page to help raise $20,000 to assist the family in rebuilding their lives again.

No connection between the fight and fire has been proven at this juncture.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.

Cover photo courtesy of Alawad’s Go Fund Me page

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