Dubai: A Jordanian man and his sister have been attacked in a racist assault in Angers, a small city outside Paris after attackers heard them speaking Arabic, local media reported. According to the victims, they were severely beaten up and assaulted by a French man and a woman.
The racially-charged attack comes after a series of hate-motivated assaults following the beheading of the history teacher for showing his students the blasphemous caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) published by Charlie Hebdo in 2015.
During a telephone call with the pair, King Abdullah II of Jordan spoke with them to enquire about their health and ensure the Jordanian embassy in Paris was providing the required help. The pair, who are in a stable condition, thanked King Abdullah for his gesture.
In a telephone interview with local media, Mohammed Abu Eid said: “The attackers started yelling at me and my wife, saying angerly this is France, not your country.” Abu Eid added: “The attackers targeted us at a bus stop after hearing us speaking in Arabic.” The attackers, however, are yet to be caught by French police. Abu Eid teaches Arabic at a French government school, while his sister, Heba Abu Eid, who was awarded a scholarship from the French Embassy in Amman, is completing her master’s degree.
The pair praised the French authorities for their assistance and the Jordanian Foreign Ministry, whose members travelled to stay with them and provide them with the necessary assistance. Ambassador Dhaifallah Ali Al Fayez, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, said the embassy is currently following up on the complaint, which has been submitted to local authorities.
The attack comes as France experiences an uptick of racially-charged harassment and assaults following the beheading of the Paris history teacher. On Thursday, two veiled women were stabbed near the Eiffel Tower. The attack is under investigation by French authorities.