Murder of student in UK shocks Lebanese

Kuwait-based Lebanese illustrator Nour Flayhan created a memorial illustration in Hachem’s name. (Nour Flayhan/Instagram: @nouriflayhan)
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Updated 22 May 2020

Murder of student in UK shocks Lebanese

  • Hachem, 19, succumbed to her wounds after she was shot from a car in Blackburn, Lancashire, outside a supermarket in broad daylight
  • Authorities believe that the law student was not the intended target, and have appealed to the public for help with the investigation

LONDON: The murder of Lebanese student Aya Hachem in a drive-by shooting in the UK on Sunday has shocked her compatriots worldwide.

“Honestly, it hit really close to home,” Gabreille Antar, a student at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, told Arab News. “A Lebanese student my age died walking to the supermarket. It’s worrisome.”

Hachem, 19, succumbed to her wounds after she was shot from a car in Blackburn, Lancashire, outside a supermarket in broad daylight.

Authorities believe that the law student was not the intended target, and have appealed to the public for help with the investigation.

Kuwait-based Lebanese illustrator Nour Flayhan created a memorial illustration in Hachem’s name.

The artwork, which was uploaded onto Flayhan’s Instagram page, has garnered over 8,000 likes.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by nourie (@nouriflayhan) on

“I wanted to honour her death as a Lebanese young woman who had a bright future ahead of her,” Flayhan told Arab News.

According to Hachem’s family, her body will be flown to Lebanon on Saturday, with the burial taking place the same day.

“Regardless of whether Aya was the intended target or not, justice needs to be served for her and her family,” pharmaceutical saleswoman Nour Safieddine told Arab News.

“Such a brutal, inhumane act is unacceptable and unbearable. Extremely sad news. My heart goes out to all her loved ones. May God be with them.”

Police have arrested 11 people as part of the investigation into the killing, eight of whom are suspected of Hachem’s murder.

Lancashire Police said in a statement: “Detectives are aware of a number of videos circulating across social media and are asking people to report them to the police. We would also ask people not to share these videos out of respect for Aya and her family.”

Detective Chief Constable Terry Woods said his officers would “not be going away until we’ve got justice for Aya and her family,” adding that “it’s now time for the criminal fraternity to come forward.”


Debate rages over Turkey’s surging pandemic numbers

Pedestrians, wearing face masks, walk in a street of Ankara on November 20, 2020. (AFP)
Updated 24 November 2020

Debate rages over Turkey’s surging pandemic numbers

  • 20% of Israeli travelers to Turkey in October tested positive for coronavirus on their return
  • No PCR test is required now in Turkish airports for the passengers entering the country. It is a very big mistake

ANKARA: Unofficial sources have warned that numbers of COVID-19 cases in Turkey are skyrocketing.

The Turkish Medical Association (TTB) estimated that daily COVID-19 cases have risen to more than 47,500, of which about 12,500 are in Istanbul. This would represent a 300 percent increase in November compared to the month before.

According to official data, however, Turkey recorded 5,103 new COVID-19 patients on Nov. 20 — the second highest new daily figure since March — and its highest daily death toll with 141 fatalities.

Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu announced that 186 people died from “infectious diseases” in the city on Nov. 22 — more than the official countrywide death toll. (The Turkish health ministry is accused of classifying some COVID-related deaths as "infection-related deaths")

The TTB, whose data drew on figures from 1,270 medics in 76 provinces, claimed that someone in Turkey dies from COVID-19 every 10 minutes. It declared that “they have lost control of the pandemic.”

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca previously admitted that they do not include everyone who tested positive for COVID-19 in the number of daily cases — they only count those who show symptoms. Following this admission Turkey was put on the UK’s quarantine-on-arrival list in early October.

BACKGROUND

Health Minister Fahrettin Koca previously admitted that they do not include everyone who tested positive for COVID-19 in the number of daily cases — they only count those who show symptoms.

Reports drawing on Israeli health ministry data say that 20 percent of Israeli travelers to Turkey in October tested positive for coronavirus on their return home, which experts consider a worryingly high figure.

Everyone arriving in Israel is obliged to self-isolate for 14 days. There is no such an obligation in Turkey.

“The countries which prove successful in managing the pandemic are those that apply strict quarantine rules and rigorously regulate arrivals in the country. But this is not the case in Turkey nowadays,” said Guner Sonmez, a radiologist from Uskudar University in Istanbul.

“Only one case can again trigger a whole chain of contagion and begin a new wave of pandemic. However, no PCR test is required now in Turkish airports for the passengers who enter the country. It is a very big mistake for managing the dynamics of the pandemic.”

Turkey recently re-introduced a partial evening curfew and restrictions on the weekends, although scientists have been urging a full 14-day lockdown.