Melbourne, Nov 13 (ANI): A Sydney couple has withdrawn their two children from a public primary school because Muslim students bullied their 11-year-old son for eating a salami sandwich during Ramadan.
Andrew Grigoriou said on Thursday that he complained to the school and to police after his son Antonios was chased and later assaulted by Muslim students after a confrontation over the contents of his lunch.
Antonios, a Year 5 student of Greek-Australian background at Punchbowl Public School in Sydney's southwest, said he and a friend had to be locked inside the library for an hour after being chased by a group of Muslim boys offended by his choice of food while they were fasting, The Daily Telegraph reports.
The Grigoriou family said the following exchange took place:
Muslim student to Antonios: "Why are you eating ham, it's Ramadan?"
Antonios: "My mum packed this for lunch today."
During the confrontation a Muslim boy allegedly accused Antonios of saying: "F. . . the Muslims," but Antonios denied swearing.
Grigoriou said he removed his son and a younger child from the school on Tuesday after the boy was punched in the eye and kicked in the legs by a Muslim student.
"It has broken my heart to see this happening to my boy," he said.
Antonios, who wrote about his experiences in words and drawings, still has nightmares.
The Department of Education and Training has said it has a zero tolerance policy towards racism.
After the salami sandwich incident, a student, described as the ringleader of the group, was suspended from the school. (ANI)