Girls 'racially abused' in Winson Green

Andrea Buchanan (centre) said she wished the gang of boys could "feel the pain" she does

Police say they are treating verbal abuse targeted at two young Birmingham girls as a racially-aggravated crime.

Andrea Buchanan, nine, said she was with some friends when they were racially abused by up to seven boys near her home in Winson Green.

She said they had refused to get involved in a snowball fight.

Insp Warren Little said: "What started as an innocent incident escalated and resulted in two young girls being racially abused."

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The incident, on Friday, 18 January, happened as the girls went to a local chip shop to collect an order.

Andrea said: "It was really scary - it made me feel like I'm a nobody and I don't deserve to be treated like that."

Her mother, Khalilah Usman, said Andrea's confidence had "been knocked" and said she now did not want to leave the house without an adult.

"At the moment she's really questioning her ethnicity and asking why there is a fault with it, when there's absolutely nothing wrong with her," she said.

Police said neighbourhood officers had spoken to the girls' parents and were continuing to work to identify those responsible.

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