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Two men sought in 'hate crime' probe after mothers and children attacked

CCTV images issued by Greater Manchester Police of two men they want to speak to after a mother was punched and her disabled child verbally abused in Manchester city centre. Photo credit: GMP/PA Wire
CCTV images issued by Greater Manchester Police of two men they want to speak to after a mother was punched and her disabled child verbally abused in Manchester city centre. Photo credit: GMP/PA Wire

Police have released images of two men they want to speak to after a mother was punched and her disabled child verbally abused in a city centre.

Two mothers and three children - a five-month-old baby, a girl aged three and a 10-year-old disabled girl in a wheelchair - were attacked during a day out in Manchester in what police are investigating as a hate crime.

The disabled girl was shouted at by two men outside Boots in Market Street, under the Arndale food court, on the afternoon of August 20.

Following the abuse, the mothers went to the nearby McDonald's in St Ann's Square but the men arrived at the restaurant and once again began shouting derogatory comments and threatening violence, Greater Manchester Police said.

One of the mothers was punched in the face and a drink was thrown.

The victims do not have any visible scars but were left traumatised, the force added.

Pc Dave Stebbings said: "Occasionally we receive reports that make you sick to the stomach.

"How anyone could attack and abuse young children and their mums on a day out, I have no idea.

"During the commotion the 10-year-old girl ended up hiding under a table, shaking, extremely distressed by the abuse and assault on her mother.

"It breaks your heart thinking about this."

He appealed to anyone who witnessed the assaults or recognises the men in the images to contact police.