A “Middle Eastern” pregnant woman in Britain has lost her unborn child after being brutally beaten in an apparent racist attack.
The attack took place in Milton Keyes, Buckinghamshire, when a 34-year-old woman was racially abused by a man in a supermarket on August 6, police said on Wednesday.
The man followed the woman into a parking lot and kicked her in the stomach. The pregnant woman collapsed in agony and was rushed to the hospital, where she was told her baby could not be saved.
The attacker also smashed a bottle and a bag of ice to the head of a 40-year-old man who tried to prevent him from kicking the lady.
The woman, according to witnesses, was "Middle Eastern in appearance" and wore a headscarf -- most probably a Muslim -- but police refused to comment on her ethnic background.
Thames Valley Police announced Wednesday that they had arrested a 37-year-old man with relation to the attack, but it was not clear if he was the assailant.
The Muslim Council of Britain condemned the attack, with Secretary General Harun Khan calling for strong action to curb the growing trend of hate crimes against minorities in the UK.
“We need strong action now from the authorities to show that they are taking all hate crimes seriously, including Islamophobia, which findings show has increased in recent times, especially post-Brexit,” he said.
On June 23, nearly 52 percent of the British voters partaking in an EU referendum voted to leave the 28-member bloc.
According to the UK’s National Police Chief’s Council (NPCC), hate crime rates in the UK have surged by 500-percent following the vote.
The NPCC’s latest report in July said the organization had registered a staggering 500-percent increase in hate crime incidents, most of which were related to anti-immigrant abuses.
UK police saw an increase of 42 percent in hate crime claims in the weeks before and after the polling day, with some 3,198 filed between June 16 and 30.