Man allegedly cuts hijab off girl near Scarborough school

Man allegedly cuts hijab off girl near Scarborough school

A Toronto schoolgirl was assaulted Friday by a man who tried to cut off her hijab with scissors and then fled, police said.

"I felt really scared and confused", Khawlah said, although she was not hurt in the incident.

Akin to a familiar theme before and after the 2016 U.S. presidential election, an 11-year-old female Toronto grammar school student is claiming a man attempted to cut off her hijab while she was on her way to school this morning.

The incident took place in east Toronto, as Khawlah Noman, a Grade 6 student, was walking to Pauline Johnson Junior Public School with her younger brother. The assailant is described as an Asian man in his 20s with a mustache and glasses.

Toronto Police say they don't yet know whether to call this a hate crime. "I am so proud to be a Canadian, and I want to give him the same message", she said.

Noman said she ran to the school and immediately told the principal, who notified her mother.

Khawlah's mother, Saima Samad, was by her side as she spoke to reporters.

Officials from all three levels of government expressed sympathy for the girl.

He said: "My heart goes out to the young girl who was attacked, seemingly for her religion".

At an afternoon press conference, 11-year-old Khawlah said she was walking down the street with her brother when a man came up from behind, removed the hood of her winter coat, and cut into her hijab. "I feel safe in this community and it's just not right".

In early December 2016, a female Muslim Baruch College student claimed several men shouting "Donald Trump!" attempted to tear off her hijab on a New York City subway train; she later admitted to making it up. She said she sensed the man behind her and screamed.

"It's just not Canada", she said. "This is not who we are". "I like to think she knows that well, and the outpouring of support that I know she's getting".

"No child should ever be afraid walking to school in Toronto because of what they are wearing or for any other reason", John Tory said.

Toronto police commended Khawlah for the way she had handled the incident. "We must stand firm in our support of this young girl who was assaulted simply for wearing a hijab", she added.

"I join with all Toronto residents in standing up to such an act of hatred".

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