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Last Updated: Tuesday, 7 September, 2004, 15:44 GMT 16:44 UK
Race murder victim is named
Outside the Potter's Wheel, Kingsway, Swansea
The assault happened outside the Potter's Wheel pub, Kingsway
Detectives in Swansea say they are confident they will track down the "racist" murderer of an Iraqi Kurd.

Kalan Kawa Karim, 29, died in hospital on Monday after the "unprovoked" attack outside a pub in Swansea's city centre.

Witnesses have come forward with information about the attacker, who is white and in his early twenties.

A councillor and the former head of the Commission for Racial Equality in Wales have reassured local people that the incident is "isolated".

Police officers are studying CCTV footage taken in the busy Kingsway area at the time of the assault, outside The Potter's Wheel pub, at around 0130 BST on Monday.

Police are still trying to locate members of Mr Karim's family.

Mr Karim had lost a leg below the knee. It is believed he had stepped on a landmine in Iraq when the country was controlled by Saddam Hussein.

Det Chief Insp Layton Bennetta
Det Chief Insp Layton Bennetta is confident the killer will be caught
He is thought to have moved to Britain from Iraq with his parents and settled in the Mount Pleasant area of Swansea.

A post-mortem examination was being carried out on Tuesday.

The man heading the inquiry, Detective Chief Inspector Layton Bennetta, said they were confident of finding the attacker, who was with two other white men, also in their early 20s.

"We've good descriptions. We've CCTV that we're looking at. We have witnesses that have come forward who can identify the attacker again," he said.

"I would ask that this person to come forward and gives us his version of events.

"And also the persons that were with him, if they would also come forward so that we can eliminate them from any involvement in this crime."

Ray Singh, the former head of the Commission for Racial Equality in Wales, said: "If what the police say and believe is true, that this was a racially-motivated shortening of a young man's life, then we as a society must make a sober reflection of what has yet again happened on our doorstep.

The public should be reassured that the city is not on the whole racist
Ray Singh

"We must be honest with ourselves and say 'enough is enough, expose racism amongst us, educate our young ones to ensure that they know racism is wrong."

But Mr Singh said Swansea was a "vibrant, multi-racial society", including many asylum seekers, Iraqis and Bangladeshis.

"The public should be reassured that the city is not on the whole racist," he said.

"Of course, people will feel frightened. But I would say this 'Be reassured that the police are treating this as a racial attack".

Swansea councillor David Phillips, who represents the Castle Ward in which the murder took place, said members of the ethnic community there must not get it out of proportion.

"Yes, members of the ethnic community in Swansea might feel frightened by this.

"But they must be reassured that both the wider community and the police are keen to ensure their safety."

Anyone with information is asked to call the incident room at Cockett Police Station on 01792 456 999 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


SEE ALSO:
Witness appeal in Iraqi murder
07 Sep 04  |  Wales


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