An 11-year-old girl from Toronto, Canada who alleged she was attacked because of her hijab fabricated the story, according to local authorities.
The account of the Kwalah Noman attack received international attention last week after she and her family held a press conference calling for hate crime charges against a man she claimed attacked her on her way to school.
“I felt really scared and confused,” Noman said on Friday.
She told police that while she was walking to school with her brother, a man wearing a black hoodie accosted her from behind, pulled her hijab from her jacket, and cut it with scissors.
“I screamed. The man just ran away. We followed this crowd of people to be safe. He came again. He continued cutting my hijab again,” said Noman.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau denounced the “cowardly attack.”
My heart goes out to Khawlah Noman following this morning’s cowardly attack on her in Toronto. Canada is an open and welcoming country, and incidents like this cannot be tolerated.
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) January 12, 2018
But Toronto authorities released a brief statement Monday saying that the events described by Noman did not occur.
“After a detailed investigation, police have determined that the events described in the original news release did not happen,” Toronto police said in a statement.
Noman’s accusation was cited as evidence of growing anti-Muslim views in the West.
Activists in Canada and the United States have claimed that bigotry and hate crimes towards Muslims have been on the rise. But there has also been an increased number of hoaxes, especially involving girls and women who have claimed that they were attacked for donning a hijab.
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