Several Asian women were allegedly racially harassed by a group of teenage boys on a London bus on July 11.
A Japanese British woman, identified by her Instagram handle @saimiyamura, and her friend were on board the number 46 bus towards Lancaster Gate station when a group of teenage boys joined them.
“Half way through 4 teenage boys came onto the bus and immediately were really loud but I didn’t really think anything of it,” she tells NextShark. “They came towards the back of the bus (second row from the back) and my friends and I sat right at the back.”
According to the female passenger, the situation escalated when the boys reportedly began harassing another Asian woman sitting near the front of the bus. “An Asian woman sat in front of 2 of the boys and one of the boys touched the woman and she immediately told them to stop but they did it again and the woman got annoyed and went to the front of the bus and told the driver about what had happened,” she said.
While the bus driver is said to have intervened after the woman made a complaint, it wasn’t enough to calm the group down:
“He wasn’t exactly clear on what he wanted them to do. He said ‘which one of you was it’ and all of the boys denied doing it. The driver told the boys to get off once but only one boy got off.”
This, however, had the opposite of the desired effect. The teenage boys’ actions became bolder as they allegedly started mocking the woman for her East Asian heritage.
“Once the boy got off, the boy wearing red started to say that he knew a really good song on YouTube and sat next to his other friend on the other side,” she recalled.
“He started to play a racist song about ‘Hong Kong’ (not really sure about the song name) he started singing along and making fun of the woman. They turned around and looked at me and saw that I was Asian as well and burst out laughing.”
As the boys were not formally asked to leave the bus by the driver, it appears the intervention of other commuters proved to be futile:
On last night’s BBC Question Time a Muslim woman in the audience challenged a white man who said that the UK was one of the least racist countries in Europe. pic.twitter.com/uIT24eyaYX
— 5Pillars (@5Pillarsuk) October 5, 2018