Socialist Worker

Protest called after attack in Croydon leaves asylum seeker fighting for life

by Charlie Kimber
Issue No. 2548


Unity against racism earlier this year

Unity against racism earlier this year (Pic: Islington SUTR)

Stand Up To Racism (SUTR) has called a vigil for tomorrow, Sunday, after a young asylum seeker was the victim of a "frenzied attack" by a group of people.

Police are treating the assault, which took place in Croydon, south London, as a hate crime. The 17-year-old Kurdish Iranian is in a critical condition in hospital.

The attack has chilling echoes of the murder of Stephen Lawrence in 1993.

The Croydon victim was waiting at a bus stop on Friday night with two friends when he was set upon by about eight people.

They asked him where he was from before chasing him down the road and repeatedly kicking him on the ground. People unconnected with the attack intervened to stop it.

But the assault continued.

A number of people came to the aid of the victim as he lay unconscious and injured.

The young man sustained serious head and facial injuries. His two friends escaped with minor injuries.

Weyman Bennett, co-convenor of SUTR, said, “This appalling and murderous attack is directly the result of the vicious racism created by politicians and right-wing groups. The Nazis who gathered in central London today are small in numbers, but the poisonous propaganda that comes from them and more mainstream groups - including the government - has horrific results.

“Everyone should stand against the demonisation of refugees and all forms of racism.

“We will hold a vigil and then a bigger demonstration next weekend.”

Police said on Sunday that four men and two women in their 20s were arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and violent disorder late on Saturday at addresses in Croydon.

Vigil, oppose racist attacks: refugees and migrants are welcome here. Sunday 2 April, 2pm, Centrale Shopping Centre, 21 North End, Croydon, CR0 1TY. Go to

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