ANTI-RACISTS will come together in a show of unity in Croydon today following the horrific beating of a teenage asylum-seeker in that part of south-east London last week.
Reker Ahmed, a 17-year-old Kurdish-Iranian, was waiting at a bus stop with two friends when he was approached by a gang of about 10 people at 11.50pm on Friday.
When the gang discovered that Ahmed and his friends were asylum-seekers, they launched a frenzied attack.
While Ahmed’s friends managed to flee after suffering only minor injuries, the gang caught up with him, knocked him to the ground and kicked him repeatedly in the head and face.
Around 20 people looked on, some of them joining in the attack.
Reker suffered a fractured skull and spine and a blood clot on the brain.
Thirteen people have appeared in court on charges linked to the attack.
Stand Up to Racism has called today’s demonstration to oppose racist attacks and to declare “refugees and migrants welcome here.”
Unite Against Fascism’s Weyman Bennett said: “Trade unionists, politicians and people from the estates of Croydon will come together to show unity against this vicious attack.”
Bridey Watson from Bristol, who set up a Just Giving appeal to raise funds for Reker, said the fund had reached £54,736 in six days — far exceeding its original target of £3,500.
“There have been thousands of messages of support on the lines of: ‘This is not us,’ ‘This is not what we stand for’,” she said.
The demonstration is supported by Disabled People Against Cuts, the University and College Union Croydon College branch, Croydon Assembly, Unite retired members and the National Union of Teachers Croydon branch.