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Belgian charity worker's Belfast home attacked

By Staff Reporter

A Belgian man believes his home in east Belfast was attacked because of his accent.

The victim suffered minor injuries after a brick was thrown through the front window of the house in Wayland Street on Tuesday night.

He told BBC Radio Ulster's Talkback programme that he works for a local charity with elderly and disabled people.

The PSNI has said it is treating the incident as a hate crime, and last month a mixed-race family to move out of the area after their car was attacked.

The victim, who gave his name as Mark, said: "I was about to turn the TV off and all of a sudden a brick - half the size of a breezeblock - flew through my window.

"I was scared to death. I saw damage on the floor, started bleeding from the head, started shaking glass from my hair and it just kept coming and coming.

"I didn't sleep at all - that brick could have killed me, the size and weight of it."

Mark said he had come to Northern Ireland in 2006 and found the majority of people to be welcoming, but was shocked by the latest incident.

"I can't believe some people are willing to do that to foreigners," he said.

"I add something to society, and it's so weird to be targeted for being a foreigner while I contribute so much.

"It just keeps going through my mind - I'm so embraced by my clients that an incident like this just rocks my world.

"People have prejudices. It's not up to me to condemn people with prejudices, I just try to educate them to see who I am, what I am."

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