University of Southampton lecturer 'beaten up in racist attack'

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image captionUniversity of Southampton described Peng Wang as a "respected member" of its community

A university lecturer has described the moment he was subjected to a violent, racist attack while out jogging.

Chinese national Peng Wang, 37, said four white men shouted at him to "go home" in Southampton on Tuesday.

He said he needed treatment for facial and elbow injuries after they punched and kicked him to the ground, leaving him with a bloody nose and mouth.

Police said a 23-year-old Southampton man had been arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated assault.

He remains in custody. Hampshire Constabulary has appealed for witnesses to the attack in Vosper Road, at about 16:00 GMT, to come forward.

image copyrightPeng Wang
image captionMr Wang said he was left with a bloodied face after being attacked by four men in Southampton

Father-of-one, Mr Wang, has lived in the city for six years and teaches financial management at the University of Southampton.

He said the men yelled racist slurs at him and became violent when he shouted back.

"I got very angry because it's just not civil," Mr Wang said, adding: "They hit me quite badly on my face... I left a lot of blood on the ground."

'Appalling and unprovoked'

He said he had seen racism against Asian people increase after former US president Donald Trump used of the phrase "the Chinese virus" to describe Covid-19.

He said if the "hostile environment" did not improve he would bring plans forward to move his family back to China.

A university spokesman described the assault as an "appalling and unprovoked attack on a respected member of our academic community".

"Our colleague is receiving support from the university and we will continue to liaise closely with the police," he added.

Ch Insp Ricky Dhanda, of Hampshire Constabulary, said: "Any crime that is committed through ignorance, prejudice or hate is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in our city."

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