Politicians 'relieved' hijab assault didn't happen

Toronto police say an investigation into an incident where an 11-year-old girl was allegedly attacked twice and had her hijab cut by a man wielding scissors revealed the events never took place.

"After a detailed investigation, police have determined that the events described in the original news release did not happen", police said.

CBC News is not naming the 11-year-old because she is a minor.

Toronto police have confirmed that an alleged scissors attack on a schoolgirl's hijab, which sparked widespread outrage including a public condemnation by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, was a hoax.

"We have spoken with (the girl), we have spoken to all the people the public would expect us to speak to in the course of a thorough investigation, and when we put all of that together - we looked at it very closely - and that was the conclusion that we came to", he said.

"My heart goes out to Khawlah Noman following this morning's cowardly attack on her in Toronto", Trudeau posted on Twitter on Friday, before police announced the attack was fake.

He said due to the amount of exposure the story received Friday, police thought it was "important" to release their findings as soon as possible.

"Investigators worked extremely hard since the allegations on Friday". " It's still not clear why the girl reported the false incident".

A spokesman for the Toronto District School Board said Monday they are "very thankful" that the alleged assault did not happen.

The family did not immediately comment about the police's statement on Monday.

Amira Elghawaby, a human rights advocate based in Ottawa, said she was saddened to learn that the girl's story was not true, adding it will likely only serve to embolden "those who do hold discriminatory views of Muslims".

"Hindsight is 20/20 and I'm sure the police, and the school and everyone will be reviewing how this was addressed".

  • Jon Douglas