Six men – including a police officer – were injured by a male suspect who was later shot dead in Glasgow, on Friday.
According to the BBC, police were called to the Park Inn Hotel at 12:50 BST after there were reports of stabbings. It was during this response that PC David Whyte was injured by the assailant before he was in turn shot. Currently, very little is known about the assailant or his motivations but Scottish Police indicated on Twitter that they were not treating it as a terrorist act. This is because it wouldn’t be difficult to theorise that the assailant was driven by hate-filled motives.
According to Independent, the Park Inn Hotel, located on West George Street, was actually used to temporarily house asylum seekers during the coronavirus pandemic. Mohammad Asif, chair of Afghan Human Rights Foundation, claimed on Twitter that he was reasonably informed by some of the residents that they’d been stabbed and were not allowed to speak to anyone about it. Further adding to the controversy are reports that many people were forcibly moved into these hotels with no money and little adherence to social distancing rules. Recently, Mears Group, responsible for housing the refugees, admitted they hadn’t carried out proper assessments before forcefully moving people. They do, however, refute claims by refugee activists like Asif and maintain that they had managers in each hotel to help residents during the pandemic. Still, it was only relatively recently that one of such refugees, Adnan Elbi, died after a suspected suicide.
However, contrary to reports that a few asylum seekers had been killed by the assailant, only the assailant was killed during the incident. As for PC Whyte and the other five casualties – three asylum seekers and two hotel staff, according to the BBC – a police statement stated that they were all still in the hospital. Like First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, we wish them a speedy and full recovery.