Don’t let hate win...
Mum’s emotional plea
MIA Ayliffe-Chung’s mum has called for calm over her brutal murder in Oz.
Distraught Rosie said: “She wouldn’t want any hostilities.”
TRAGIC Mia Ayliffe-Chung told her mum she was having the time of her life on her dream trip Down Under, just hours before she was stabbed to death in a hostel.
The 20-year-old British backpacker was dragged from her bed by roommate Smail Ayad as he yelled Allahu Akbar – God is great – before knifing her repeatedly and leaving her to die in a pool of blood.
Her pal Tom Jackson bravely tried to stop the horrific attack but he was stabbed up to 20 times by the crazed Frenchman and was last night fighting for his life.
Mia’s distraught mum Rosie Ayliffe led the tributes to her daughter and despite her intense grief pleaded for calm over the attack. She said: “Mia was a rare person who saw beyond race, creed and belief.
“As a peaceful person Mia had huge respect for everybody. She would not want to be the reason for any hostilities caused by any misrepresentations of events.”
It is believed 29-year-old kickboxing champion Ayad had become infatuated by Mia and flipped when he found out the feeling was not mutual.
Police said there was no evidence he had been radicalised. Mia was staying at Shelley’s Backpackers hostel in Home Hill, Queensland, with Ayad, 31-year-old Tom and fellow Brit, Chris Porter.
A source said: “The night before they were all chatting together. Everything seemed normal.
“They went to bed early because they were getting up for farm work next day. But in the middle of the night all hell broke loose. They were woken up by the attack. It was pandemonium.” A French tourist added: “Everybody has told us he was completely crazy, they couldn’t recognise him. He said he wants to kill everybody.”
With blood-curdling screams ringing out, heroic Tom, of Congleton Cheshire, leapt to Mia’s aid but was stabbed repeatedly in the face, chest and stomach.
The French tourist said: “He tried to stop him and he was given 20 wounds of the knife. We have been told he is fighting between life and death.”
Tom’s sister Olivia Jackson, 23, said: “He’s still in a critical condition in hospital.” Chris was on the bunk above Mia’s bed and woke to find her being stabbed.
The terrified 21-year-old fled the room to raise the alarm, shouting “murder, murder”. He fractured both heels leaping from a first-floor window.
But Ayad is said to have chased after him. Chris’s brother Aaron, who was last night by his hospital bed, said: “The guy has chased him down the road with the knife.
“He had to wave down a car and this guy was trying to smash through the car window. Chris said the Frenchman had been there for a few days and seemed an absolutely normal guy.
“He spoke to the guy before he went to bed and he seemed fine. He has woken up to him dragging Mia out of bed.”
Chris’s foster mum Kim Porter, of High Halstow, Kent, added: “He is distraught obviously. Very distraught.”
Bill Khatkar, who runs the Red Dog pub in the village, told how Chris worked there before he went travelling.
He said: “He is a lovely, lovely person. He would stand up for anyone. He wouldn’t look left or right, he’d just go straight in.”
Australian Grant Scholtz, 46 – thought
to be one of the hostel owners – also tried to step in to help Mia but was stabbed in the leg. He dog was killed in the attack at around 11.15pm on Tuesday.
Neighbours claimed Ayad had been singing the French national anthem before he burst into tears and started screaming Allahu Akbar.
Police said he repeated the chant when he was arrested.
Tributes poured in for Mia, from Wirksworth, Derbys, who had been at the hostel for about 10 days after leaving the Gold Coast to renew her visa in Home Hill.
Just hours before she was killed, Mia called her mum to say: “Don’t worry about me. I’m fine.” And 10 days before she said travelling “isn’t as scary as I thought”.
Rosie described her daughter as an “amazing young woman with an adventurous spirit”.
She added: “Not only was she kind and funny, she was clever, sassy, with a sense of fun. Mia was full of the kind of open-minded compassion for life that you don’t see that often.
“Above all else she had a strong sense of right and wrong and would always look
Everybody told us he was crazy. He wanted to kill everybody. Tom tried to stop him FRENCH TOURIST ON HORRIFIC KNIFE ATTACK WHICH KILLED MIA IN HOSTEL
after those she considered in need She was an outstanding friend to many and dearly loved by the children of our community. Her feisty nature and strong sense of justice made Mia a beloved friend to her peers and to all those who knew her.”
Mia’s older sister, Nicola Hawkridge-Chung, from London, broke down as she said: “We are absolutely shocked and despairing right now. Mia was lovely, caring, warm and generous.”
Her family were yesterday preparing to fly to Australia.
Mia’s boyfriend Jamison Stead said she adored Australia and had “fallen in love with the country and its people”.
The 23-year-old Australian sales rep added: “I can’t quite get my head around what’s happened. Truly devastated, more just disbelief that this has happened.
“She was a beautiful girl who had her whole life ahead of her and we spoke of what the future may hold in store for her and what she wanted to do.
“It’s sad knowing that she won’t be able to do those things. My heart goes out to her and her family.” Mia had worked at the Bedroom Lounge Bar in Surfers Paradise. Owner Max Pickering, 24, said: “No one here can quite believe it. We are utterly heartbroken and in total shock. Mia was a wonderful, joyous, super confident and infectious person to be around.”
Mia’s family and friends kept up with her adventures on Facebook.
On July 19 she posted: “The hardest thing living my dream, missing important home things.” Rosie replied: “You’ll be back in the blink of an eye, and we’ll all still be doing the same old stuff. Live your dream and know you’re in all our hearts.”
Mia’s final update on August 20 read: “Day 4 done. Just 85 left. Sun is too hot.”
Devastated pals yesterday vowed to carry on preparations for Mia’s 21st birthday in October.
Ayad was arrested but had not been charged last night. It is believed he may have been hurt while being apprehended and was in hospital under armed guard.
Police said he arrived in Australia in March on a temporary visa. His Facebook page says he lives in Thailand.
TRAGIC Brit Mia, 20, was stabbed to death in a hostel HELD Killer Smail Ayed
STABBED Tom was fighting for life last night HURT Grant was knifed and his dog killed INJURED Chris broke heels leaping from hostel
HOME Where she lived with family CUTE As a smiling baby
TRAGIC TRIP Backpacker Mia was in Australia Crazed Smail Ayad was infatuated Police at hostel where she was knifed FUN-LOVING Popular Mia in Facebook pic