Mi­grants suffering from ‘de­spi­ca­ble’ surge in hate crimes and racist in­sults

The Daily Telegraph - - News - By Steven Swin­ford DEPUTY PO­LIT­I­CAL ED­I­TOR

DAVID CAMERON has said that racism and hate crime tar­geted at mi­grants in the wake of the EU ref­er­en­dum must be “stamped out”.

The Prime Min­is­ter pledged to “bring our country to­gether” af­ter a se­ries of in­ci­dents, in­clud­ing racist graf­fiti on a Pol­ish com­mu­nity cen­tre in west Lon­don.

The Na­tional Po­lice Chiefs’ Coun­cil dis­closed that re­ports of hate crime have risen by 57 per cent since the ref­er­en­dum.

It said there were 85 re­ports of hate crimes to True Vi­sion, a po­lice-funded re­port­ing website, be­tween Thurs­day and Sun­day against 54 re­ports over the same pe­riod four weeks ago. Cam­bridgeshire Po­lice is in­ves­ti­gat­ing af­ter cards reading “Leave the EU – no more Pol­ish ver­min” were dis­cov­ered.

An 11-year-old boy, whose fam­ily moved to Bri­tain from Poland three years ago, told the BBC he was go­ing to school when he found a card con­tain­ing the words on Fri­day. The boy’s fa­ther said: “I live in this country, I pay any taxes. My home is now this country. I do not un­der­stand this sit­u­a­tion.”

Sima Kotecha, a jour­nal­ist who works on BBC Ra­dio 4’s Today pro­gramme, re­vealed that she had been sub­jected to racist in­sults in her home town of Bas­ingstoke, Hamp­shire.

The Prime Min­is­ter hit out at those who have abused EU im­mi­grants and black or Asian peo­ple as he in­sisted the country “will not stand for hate crime”.

Speak­ing in the Com­mons, he said: “We have a fun­da­men­tal re­spon­si­bil­ity to bring our country to­gether.

“In the past few days we have seen de­spi­ca­ble graf­fiti daubed on a Pol­ish com­mu­nity cen­tre, we’ve seen ver­bal abuse hurled against in­di­vid­u­als be- cause they are mem­bers of eth­nic mi­nori­ties.

“Let’s re­mem­ber th­ese peo­ple have come here and made a won­der­ful con­tri­bu­tion to our country.

“We will not stand for hate crime or th­ese kinds of at­tacks, they must be stamped out.”

Boris John­son, who is ex­pected to stand as a can­di­date for the Con­ser­va­tive lead­er­ship, said he was “ap­palled” by the re­ports of an in­crease in racism and xenophobia.

He said: “Hate crime of any kind is in­ex­cus­able and must be met with the full force of the law. Bri­tain is an open, tol­er­ant and friendly so­ci­ety that wel­comes peo­ple from across the globe.”

Mr John­son added that there was “no way” that EU na­tion­als cur­rently in the UK would lose their right to live and work here be­cause of the ref­er­en­dum re­sult.

Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of Lon­don, asked Scot­land Yard to be “ex­tra vig­i­lant” and urged Lon­don­ers to “pull to­gether and rally be­hind this great city”.

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