The Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) expresses its deepest sorrow at the brutal murder of a member of the Muslim student community last night in Colchester. A Saudi international student at the University of Essex, Nahid Al Manea, had only recently come to the UK in pursuit of an education for a brighter future. Essex police have confirmed that her hijab (Muslim dress) may have played a factor in this horrific crime.
FOSIS President, Omar Ali, said, “My heart sank today after hearing the traumatising news of an innocent life being so viciously snatched away. This is the saddest piece news I have had the displeasure of receiving in all my years of student activism. Our sincere prayers are with our sister who has been murdered and we extend our sincerest condolences to her family.”
Omar Ali continued, “Sadly this is not the first attack on a Muslim student in the UK and I fear it may not be the last. While the motives behind this senseless crime are still under investigation, it seems very likely that this is another crime inspired by Islamophobic hatred, due to the victim’s visibly Muslim appearance. Unfortunately, this would correlate with an increasingly disturbing tread of hate crimes against Muslims here in the UK.”
Omar Ali concluded, “Islamophobic hate speech, be it barefaced or disguised as news or political commentary is having a real impact of the lives and safety of Muslims in the UK. It is high time that those politicians, commentators and institutions that espouse pernicious narratives about Muslims and Islam take responsibility for the terrible consequences of their words.”
With the continued rise in hate crimes against Muslims, FOSIS encourages all Muslim students, especially women, to remain vigilant of their surroundings, to avoid walking alone and to maintain their safety.
1. FOSIS (est. 1963) is the umbrella organisation of student groups in colleges and universities throughout the UK and Ireland, representing the interests of over 115,000 Muslim students.