Thursday, August 11, 2011

Haroon Jahan, Abdul Musawar and Shezad , Three Pakistanis killed by rioters

Police in Birmingham city were trying to contain raging and swelling anger within the Asian community after a hit-and-run by suspected rioters killed three Pakistani young men, two of them brothers.
Despite appeals for calm from senior police officers, young Asians vowed to defend their streets once more following an attack which has plunged a them into mourning - and awoken fury about what they believe to be a lack of police officers on their streets at a time of widespread unrest.
Tariq Jahan, the father of one of the dead men, said his son Haroon would still be alive had police stopped the rioting and looting  in time . But he also called for an end to the violence: "People have been hurt, families have been hurt, if we don't stop this and the people who are rioting do not stop this, there will be more people dying. It has to stop and we are standing here united." Earlier in the day, he  tried to calm tensions by saying that the deaths were "not a race issue".
Witnesses who saw all this in the Winson Green area of Birmingham described the moment when Haroon Jahan, 21, and two brothers, Abdul Musavir aged 31, and Shahzad , 30, were struck by a car travelling at high speed in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
The men were part of a group of around 80 locals patrolling Dudley Road throughout Tuesday night in a peaceful show of force against rioters who were bringing renewed destruction to the streets of Birmingham.
Tariq Jahan was standing yards away from where his son was struck down deliberately by a rioter's car and desperately tried to resuscitate him as the car sped off.
Community leaders have tried to calm tensions among the Asians but youths openly threatened inter-ethnic violence if police failed to bring the perpetrators to justice. "If the police don't do something soon it's going to kick off," warned one young  man.
The ethnicity of the car's occupants has not been disclosed but locals believe that they were black. In Birmingham, where there have been violent outbursts before between black and Asians, the perception that the culprits are black is potentially explosive.
Six years ago the racially mixed inner city suburb of Lozells exploded in  running battles for days between blacks and Asians people . The cause was  a false rumour, broadcast on pirate radio stations, that a black woman had been raped by an Asian man. The riots were very violent.

Police last night announced that 60 detectives were working around the clock on the collision, which they are treating as a triple murder investigation. A man aged about 31 has been arrested on suspicion of murder. But last night police also confirmed that they are seeking other perpetrators as well.

Detective Superintendent Richard Baker, who is working on the case, said there were a dozen people in custody who police believe to be involved in thsi heinous crime .


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