Apr 26, 2019 06:17 UTC
  • Knife crime in England and Wales rose to record levels last year

A total of 40,829 attacks involving knives or sharp instruments took place in 2018 in the United Kingdom, according to police data.

According to Press TV, the Office for National Statistics said in a report released on Thursday that cases of murder and manslaughter, excluding terror attacks, increased by 12 percent last year. 

Some 732 people were killed during these attacks in 2018, up from 655 in 2017, which is the highest figure since 2007.

The knife crime figures come amid a national debate on the issue in the UK, following a series of assaults and killings involving young people.

Somali families living in the UK are reportedly rushing their children back to Africa to avoid them being trapped in knife crimes and growing violence on the streets.

The Observer said in a recent report that many Somali teenagers have been sent back to the Somalia, Somaliland or Kenya as their parents are becoming increasingly worried about their safety in the UK, where stabbings and gang violence continue to affect children and young adults almost on a daily basis.

Most of those families are from a Somalia community living in Islington, London, where they have been based since the 1990s when civil war in their home country left them displaced. Children of the community, however, have been mostly hired or exploited by gangs and drug traffickers as most of them have found it hard to integrate and live a normal life.

Local authorities say many families from the community are now sending their children back to Africa as they are concerned about their safety.

Knife crime epidemic became a bigger concern in the UK after two teenagers were killed in unprovoked attacks in London and Manchester last month.

Many have blamed the ruling Tory government’s austerity measures for the spike in violence, saying an understaffed police have been unable to contain gangs and respond to emergencies in large cities.