Arts&Culture

Toronto schoolgirl, 11, 'really scared' after hijab cut in scissors attack

Toronto schoolgirl, 11, 'really scared' after hijab cut in scissors attack

Addressing her attacker, the girl said: "What you're doing is really wrong, you should not act like this, and especially, I'm a kid". "This is not who we are".

She says the girl then crossed the street and, about 10 minutes later, she noticed the man cutting at her hijab again.

"This school lives inclusiveness", she said.

The fearless girl had a message for her attacker and said: 'What you're doing is very wrong, you should stop doing this. "Young kids coming to school shouldn't have to face this". Police were called to the scene by 9:15 a.m.

Norm Kelly, the area's city councillor, responded to the incident by saying there was "no place in Canadian society for hate crime - whether large or small", adding, "I'll be asking my followers to send any tips they may have to police".

Toronto police say it's too early to determine if the motivation behind the alleged attack is a hate crime but that officers are canvassing the neighbourhood for footage from surveillance cameras and people who may have witnessed the confrontation.

Their mother, Samia Samad, said she can not understand why someone would do something like this.

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Toronto police lauded Khawlah's quick thinking and response to the attack, with Const. Jenifferjit Sidhu saying she was "very, very smart" for shouting and joining the group of students ahead of her. Sidhu said this is "an isolated incident", such that she has never seen in her 20 years of service.

"A day of action will express our recommitment to fight Islamaphobia, and become a rallying call", he said.

The Toronto District School Board said it was offering support to Khawlah and her family, as well as other students, and working with investigators on the case. Terrified, she turned to face him - a young Asian male, roughly 5-foot-8 to six feet tall, wearing black trousers, a black hoodie and brown gloves. He has a medium build, is between five-foot-eight and six-feet tall. He wore black trousers, a black hoodie and gloves, and sported a moustache.

"No child should ever be afraid walking to school in Toronto because of what they are wearing or for any other reason and I want to assure the family that Toronto police are investigating", wrote Tory. Anyone who can help with further information should Toronto Police or Crime Stoppers.

The incident has inspired an outpouring of support, including from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

"I can't imagine how afraid she must have been", Trudeau said at a cabinet retreat in London, Ont.

"It does not represent who we are [as Canadians]", Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne said in a Twitter message in response to the attack.