18-Year-Old Afghan Refugee Stabbed to Death in London

Hazrat Wali was killed in a sports field in front of children aged 12 and 13 playing rugby. He’s the 26th teenager to be killed in London this year.
Max Daly
London, GB
October 14, 2021, 11:18am
Screenshot 2021-10-14 at 11

A teenage Afghan refugee was stabbed to death in a sports field in front of schoolchildren playing rugby in London.

According to witnesses, Hazrat Wali, 18, was attacked on Tuesday by a group of teenage boys in the middle of the afternoon in a park in Twickenham, south west London. 

A sports teacher tried CPR but Wali, who lived in Notting Hill, west London, and came to the UK two years ago alone “to pursue a better life” according to friends, died soon after.

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Wali, a student at Richmond upon Thames College, is the 26th teenager to be killed in the capital so far this year in what is becoming a youth homicide epidemic in the UK. The city is on track for the worst year on record for teenage killings with the previous high of 29 in 2008. 

His friend Sahil Kochay told the Evening Standard: “He was a very good person. Very caring and loved everyone. He didn’t hold any hate towards anybody. He used to stand up for everyone. I wish I knew why someone would hurt him. He wasn’t the kind of guy to fight.”

Police, who have launched a murder investigation, said they were “pursuing a key suspect who is still at large”. A witness said the attack happened on a footbridge where a group of boys were heard arguing. After the attack, which left the schoolchildren in tears, a group of boys ran off after they were approached by a teacher. 

One onlooker said: “There was a teacher in a rugby kit, he was trying to save the boy. He was giving CPR. There were two girls next to him, they were crying. He was a real hero, it was a terrible scene. Five minutes before the incident a group of very noisy kids came along heading to the field. The next thing we knew, all hell let loose.” 

DCI Vicky Tunstall said police were still working to establish the motive behind the attack. “We know a lot of people were on the field at the time and I’d urge anyone who has not yet spoken to police to contact us immediately.”

Local Liberal Democrat MP Munira Wilson offered her condolences to Wali's family and friends. She said stabbings were a rare occurrence in Twickenham, a wealthy suburb, although police in the borough have warned about a spate of machete attacks on cyclists in nearby Richmond Park.