Observer Comment: Attacks on foreign students must stop

SUMMER has arrived and with the warmer weather comes once again the much less palatable repeated assaults on foreign students (page 4).

For a town that relies so heavily on income from visitors, this really is an issue that needs to be addressed, and fast.

The council and business community may be busily thrashing out a re-branding strategy for the town, however if the overwhelming impression taken away by the students after several weeks at the English seaside is more coastal nightmare than coastal retreat, then we have a problem.

Foreign students may be easy targets, however this is no excuse for the verbal and physical assaults that they are subjected to by local thugs. Particularly frightening one would imagine, when English is not your native tongue.

Increasing the visible police presence in problem areas could help, and in some countries, the penalties for attacks on tourists are particularly harsh- perhaps this is something that needs to be seriously considered in the UK.