A 16-year-old Middle Eastern language school student has died after being beaten up in what police believe was a racially motivated attack.
Mohammed al-Majed, who was from the Gulf state of Qatar, died in hospital on Sunday night from severe head injuries two days after he and his friends were set upon outside a kebab shop in Hastings, East Sussex. Police are treating his death as murder.
Majed, described by friends as "like a brother to everyone", had spent five weeks in Hastings studying English at the EF International Language School. He had been due to return home next week.
He and his friends were set upon as they left a social club for foreign students shortly before midnight on Friday. They were beaten, kicked and pelted with glass bottles by a group of youths, who stamped repeatedly on Majed's head before leaving him for dead.
Majed's room-mate, Majd Al Ghannamah, 19, who suffered a black eye, said the assailants chanted racist abuse during the attack. "They called me Saddam Hussain and Osama Bin Laden. We just wanted to get away, get home, but they attacked and we couldn't get away," he said.
Another student suffered a head injury needing six stitches. "I blame myself for not saving Mohammed, but where I come from, we are not used to this kind of thing happening. At home, we never need to defend ourselves like that," said the boy, who did not want to be named.
Source: Guardian (English)