The Muslim Council of Britain commends the decision this week to charge a 16 year old male suspected of committing common assault at a school in Huddersfield, following a shocking and violent video that has been shared thousands of times on social media, even though the incident took place almost 5 weeks ago.
The victim was a 15-year-old boy who’s family had recently settled as refugees in the UK having fled from the Syrian city of Homs. It is also reported that his sister had her headscarf ripped off in a separate incident in what appears to be an Islamophobic attack.
From his Facebook page, it appears the young male had posts supporting far-right activist and English Defence League (EDL) co-founder Stephen Yaxley Lennon (sometimes known by the pseudonym Tommy Robinson), as well as posts backing Boris Johnson’s refusal to apologise for saying women in burkas look like letterboxes.
Harun Khan, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, said, “It appears that the irresponsible comments of senior politicians and the attempts to normalise far-right individuals who crave media attention to fuel their divisive agendas, may have contributed to this sickening attack on an innocent boy.”
He continued, “The out-pouring of support from local residents, local MPs and members of the British public who have so far raised more than £120,000 online for the victim and his family, show that our society will remain united against such disgusting hate and bullying.”
He also said, “Given that the victim’s sister at the same school also had her headscarf ripped off in a separate incident in what appears to be an Islamophobic attack, we urge the police to consider investigating that incident further as well, in order to send a strong signal that such incidents are unacceptable.”
We encourage all relevant parties involved in this incident to address the issues this has raised and identify short and long-term measures to ensure such hateful acts of violence never happen again.