A 17-year-old refugee was beaten brutally in Croydon, a town in London, England, and is now fighting for his life after an attack that targeted him as an asylum seeker.
The Kurdish Iranian refugee was at a bus stop late Friday night when a group of eight people approached him and his two friends, demanding to know where he was from. Once they learned he was seeking asylum, they chased the teenager and repeatedly punched him in the head. Six people, four men and two women, have so far been arrested in connection with the crime, which is being investigated as a hate crime.
The boy was left unconscious, and is now in the hospital, having suffered a fractured skull and blood clot on the brain. On Sunday he was said to be in serious but stable condition. His two friends suffered minor injuries as well.
“He has sustained serious head and facial injuries as a result of this attack, which included repeated blows to the head by a large group of attackers,” investigating officer Kris Blamires told media. “A number of people came to the aid of the victim as he lay unconscious and injured following the assault.”
Politicians from the full spectrum came out to condemn the attack, however Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott chided right-wing politicians in the country for being the instigators of such xenophobic violence.
“With right-wing politicians across the world scapegoating migrants, refugees and others for their economic problems, we are seeing a deeply worrying rise in the politics of hate. We must make clear that there is no place for anti-foreigner myths, racism and hate in our society,” she said, as reported by The Guardian.
Croydon Central Member of Parliament Gavin Barwell described the attackers as "scum," telling the Press Association, "I think most people in Croydon will be as appalled as I am that what appears to have happened is a young man who came to this country seeking sanctuary has apparently been targeted because of his ethnic background.”
"It's an appalling crime and I hope the people responsible are caught quickly and receive the full force of British justice," he added.