Pinoy family target of 'hate-motivated' harassment in Belfast
Screengrab from ITV News
A Filipino family has been experiencing harassment in their home in Belfast in what the community believed was a race-related crime, report said.
According to a report on The Irish News, the house of Cleo and Memet Enriquez was pelted with stones on Tuesday night, resulting in a damaged door panel window.
It was the seventh attack in four weeks, the report said. On Halloween, fireworks were thrown at the couple's property located at Brae Hill Link in north Belfast.
Cleo Enriquez, a biomedical scientist, said the attack frightened their two children, aged 15 and 8. Despite the attacks, she said relocating is far from their minds, and instead pleaded for the culprits to stop.
"Why should we have to because some people don’t want us here?" she said in the report.
The Enriquez couple has been living in their house for 11 years and has almost paid off mortgage, the report said.
Cleo told the website, "My husband thought we needed to install the CCTV to deter them but it hasn't worked. We can't rest in the house - we are constantly out and every night you are thinking 'what will they do or will they come again?'"
The scientist, whose family has received overwhelming support from the community, vowed that her family would not be intimidated out of their home.
Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) Chief Inspector Stephen Burns said in an ITV News report that they have identified "hate-motivated crime" as one of their key priorities and have advised the public to report any incidents so they "can address them at the earliest opportunity."
Oldpark PUP councillor Julie-Ann Corr urged the perpetrators to stop harassing the Enriquez, who she said were "understandably terrified and concerned for their safety."
“I can say for certain the community is furious that this is happening, and there is a feeling of repulsion that a family is having to suffer this way. As a community we will stand with them against these attacks," Corr said in The Irish News report. —Rie Takumi/KBK, GMA News