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Mixed-race girl stabbed in Russia - reports

Written by: Staff
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MOSCOW, Mar 26 (Reuters) A nine-year-old girl of mixed race was stabbed by two attackers in the northern city of St Petersburg, Interfax news agency reported today.

Two attackers followed the girl into the entrance hall of her block of flats late yesterday and stabbed her in the neck and head, sources in the prosecutor's office told Interfax.

The girl, who is a Russian citizen, made her way to her flat, where her father, a citizen of the African state of Mali, called the emergency services. Her mother is Russian.

She was operated on at a local hospital but doctors were concerned about her head injuries, state television reported.

Prosecutors have opened a criminal case for attempted murder and police sources cited by the First Channel television station said it was likely to have been a racist attack.

President Vladimir Putin has called on police to stamp out racist attacks. But immigrant groups and foreign students say attacks are frequent, especially on those whose skin colour marks them out as foreign.

The killing of a nine-year-old girl from Tajikistan in a St Petersburg courtyard in 2004 aroused concerns about a series of racially-motivated attacks in the city.

REUTERS DKS BS1501

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