Norwich rally shows support for EU and international migrants
- Credit: Archant
Hundreds of people gathered outside Norwich's City Hall for a rally to show support for the EU and international migrants following the Brexit vote, and an arson attack on a Romanian shop in the city.
Yesterday evening's crowd warmly applauded Andreea Abraham, the daughter of the owner of The Village Shop in Magdalen Street, which was attacked in the early hours of Friday, as she thanked citizens for the generosity which has seen more than £30,000 donated.
Police have said they are keeping an open mind about whether the incident was racially motivated.
Becky Taylor, a historian at the UEA, asked the crowd how many of them lived in the parish they were born in.
After no-one raised their hands, she said: 'We are all migrants in our own lives. That's something we should hold on to. It's not just about being nice to migrants. It's an identity we all hold.'
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Marcia X, an Afro-Latinx visual artist and writer, passed on a message from a black female friend, who said sometimes she is silent when attacked, and urged other people to speak up when they see it happen, to show victims that they are not alone.
Many people in the audience held placards or banners, with slogans including 'EU worker making Britain great', 'Refugees welcome let them in', 'You are welcome here', and 'Support migrant workers, welcome refugees, zero tolerance on racism'.
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Fern Richards, a UEA student, read messages from friends she had contacted ahead of the rally.
They included one woman from Poland who said she was months away from being able to apply for UK citizenship, but she was not sure if she felt like it, although her father encouraged her to apply as a show of defiance.
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