British Embassy 'shocked and saddened' by killing of Egyptian student in UK, says authorities committed to finding justice

Dina Kamal, Ahram Daily Chief Diplomatic Reporter, Friday 16 Mar 2018

Egyptian teenager Mariam Moustafa who died after being attacked in Nottingham, England on February 20 (Photo: Nottingham Post)

The British Embassy in Cairo expressed “sadness and shock” over the death of Mariam Moustafa, an 18-year-old Egyptian Central College student in the city of Nottingham, who died on Wednesday from injuries suffered after she was attacked by a group of girls outside a shopping mall in London on 20 February.

"Nottinghamshire police are committed to bringing those responsible to justice through a meticulous enquiry," a UK embassy spokeswoman said in a statement, adding that extensive investigations have already been completed and that UK authorities are in communication with the Egyptian Embassy in London.

“Our thoughts are with her family and friends. We share the desire to know the full facts as soon as possible,” the statement said, though the spokeswoman added that authorities cannot publicly comment on an ongoing investigation or the details of the case, because “this could prejudice court proceedings and make it more difficult to secure justice for Maryam.”

The statement added that authorities cannot comment on Maryam’s medical history and treatment because of the UK's privacy laws.

"What we must and will do is make sure this disgusting crime does not go unpunished," the spokeswoman added.

On Thursday, Ambassador Khaled Rizk, the Deputy Foreign Minister for Consular Affairs and Egyptians Abroad, said that the ministry is following up on investigations into Maryam’s death and is waiting for medical reports on her condition upon entering the hospital and the forensic report on the cause of death to seek legal action in case of negligence.

According to her father, Maryam was assaulted and severely beaten by a group of girls on the street last month. Her father said she was released from hospital after five hours without receiving proper treatment, leading to deterioration in her health and forcing her to be readmitted to the hospital in worse condition.

Nasser Kamel, the Egyptian Ambassador in London, said that the initial treatment at the British hospital of Maryam "raises questions" and legal procedures are to be sought in case of medical negligence.

According to the Nottingham Post, a 17-year-old female suspect was arrested by police on suspicion of "assault occasioning grievous bodily harm," but was later released on conditional bail.

The Nottingham Post said that a post-mortem examination is set to take place.

On Wednesday evening, Egypt's Foreign Ministry said that the Egyptian consulate in London is following up on legal measures to punish the perpetrators and hold accountable those who showed negligence in treating the teenager.

The ministry said it has been in touch with the girl's family and is taking the necessary procedures to return her body home.

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