|Editor||Future Citizens in Europe Ed. Alistair Ross|
In June 1992, Ruhollah Aramesh, a 24 year old Afghan refugee, was murdered in south London, while defending his sister from racial abuse. Ruhollah Aramesh was a much-liked volunteer interpreter at the South London Refugee Project and at the Refugee Council. He had intended to study medicine at university. On that summer day a life full of promise was extinguished. Ruhollah Aramesh was one of twenty nine people murdered by racists during the last fifteen years. As well as British citizens, their numbers include refugees from Turkey, Somalia, Sri Lanka, and Sudan: people who had come to the UK seeking refuge from persecution. For every murder there are hundreds of thousands of incidents of racist abuse, racial attacks, spitting and other abuse, most of which goes unreported. And the majority of perpetrators of racial harassment are young. This paper examines how schools can challenge racial harassment, and what role citizenship education can play in this.