The daughter of a woman who lost her life in the first suicide bombings in Britain ten years ago has spoken out about her ordeal in the days following the attacks. 52 innocent people were killed and over 700 injured on the 7th July 2005 when four bombs were detonated on London’s transport system.
Azuma Wundowa was just 16 years old when the bombings happened, and had to wait several days to find out whether or not her mother had survived.
“I’d held onto this notion that maybe my Mum had really hurt herself and had got amnesia and just couldn’t remember where who she was and where she lived.
“And I used to sit at the living room window – because me and my brother used to do this when she was alive – waiting for her to come home.”
But perhaps her most unexpected comments are reserved for the four bombers, including the one whose actions took her mother’s life.
“I just feel really sorry for them, and I feel really sorry for their families. I feel sad that you would cut your life short”
Miss Wundowa, now 26, makes the comments in 7/7 – Ten Years On, a short film produced as a free resource by charity-funded website TrueTube. The film marks the tenth anniversary of the attacks, and shares perspectives on the causes and consequences, to encourage classroom discussion.
The film also contains powerful testimonies from survivor Sudhesh Dahad, who was in the same Piccadilly Line carriage as one of the bombers, and Imam Qari Muhammad Asim who helped his community in Leeds recover after discovering that one of perpetrators lived only a few streets away from his mosque. Prime Minister David Cameron claimed last week that some British Muslim communities “quietly condone” extremist ideology. However the film suggests that the people involved see a clear distinction between violent extremists and the vast majority of Muslims who are peaceful.
Imam Asim says of the bombers, “Those people are an affront to human dignity and an insult to God.”
Miss Wundowa goes on to highlight concerns over the way Muslims are often associated with violence.
“I have family that are Muslim, and it’s unfortunate that people who maybe follow that religion and are really peaceful get tarred with this brush.”
TrueTube’s Education Producer Bob Ayres hopes that the film will be widely used in schools in the lead up to the 10th Anniversary of the attacks.
“Secondary school pupils were very young at the time, so for them it’s dimly-remembered history. We want them to be clear about what happened and begin to understand the consequences the events have had for individuals and for our society.
“Azuma, Sudhesh and Qari speak with grace and insight and are remarkable role models for our young audience”
7/7 – Ten Years On is now freely available online at www.truetube.co.uk/film/77.