A Muslim community activist was attacked on Tuesday by a group of girls, while witnesses watched and did nothing to help.
Souad Kirama, 51, was having a coffee with a friend in a Panera Bread in Brooklyn Bridge, New York City, when she was punched and called ‘a f** terrorist’.
They also told her to ‘go back to her country’ and spat on her while other diners watched.
Speaking in an emotional Facebook Live video just half an hour after the attack, Souad said: ‘People were just standing there watching me being beaten up and being called a “f** terrorist. They were just having their coffee like nothing was happening. Never in my life have I seen this kind of violence and aggressiveness. I made sure to report it as a hate crime. We cannot accept this.’
An employee at Panera Bread said the attack was ‘pretty quick’.
Souad Kirama is a community activist in New York City (Credit: Facebook/Souad Kirama)
Albert Fox Cahn, the legal director of the Council on American Islamic Relations, said ‘It is intolerable to see so many New Yorkers do nothing in the face of this sort of hatred. At this moment, when Muslim New Yorkers are enduring a historic surge in hate crimes, we must all stand up when we see our neighbours being attacked,’.