Camden’s bloodiest night: Family loses third young man to knife violence
Sadiq Aadam stabbed to death just months after his brother died in a knife attack
22 February, 2018 — By William McLennan
Left to right: Sadiq Aadam was killed on Tuesday, Mohamed Aadam was murdered in September and Mohamed Abdullahi died in a stabbing in 2013
ONE of two young men stabbed to death during Camden’s bloodiest night in recent memory was the third member of his family to be killed in a knife murder.
Sadiq Aadam, 20, died just six months after the death of his brother Mohamed, who was stabbed in Mornington Crescent late last year. Paramedics could not save Sadiq after he was stabbed in a frenzied attack in Malden Road. In a tragic sequence of events on Tuesday evening, his death came little more than an hour after 17-year-old Abdikarim Hassan suffered fatal stab wounds in Kentish Town.
There were reports of up to six knife attacks across the borough within the space of a few hours on the same night, four of which are under police investigation. A 16-year-old survived his injuries in Aldenham Street, Somers Town. The Metropolitan Police said “urgent enquiries are underway” to find out if the attacks are linked.
After Mr Aadam had been stabbed, witnesses reported seeing a group of four men, with their faces covered by bandanas, wielding knives and swords. Police are investigating reports that they used a van to travel between the two murder scenes. Both murder victims are children of Camden’s Somali community. Mr Aadam, who had recently started a business and finance course at Middlesex University, was described as having “the brightest of futures”.
He is the third member of the same family to be murdered at the age of 20 within the past five years. Mohamed Aadam was stabbed to death near the Ampthill Square Estate in September, shortly before his 21st birthday. Their cousin, Mohamed Abdullahi, was murdered in 2013, aged 20, outside a takeaway in York Way.
The day before he was killed, Sadiq Aadam had been at the Old Bailey with his mother and uncle, Aydarus Ahmed, for what was meant to be the start of the trial of 18-year-old Erick Ekam, who is accused of killing Mohamed Aadam. The trial was adjourned on Tuesday afternoon and a jury dismissed. Eight hours later, the family once again fell victim to London’s knife crime epidemic.
The family said in a statement yesterday (Wednesday): “We the family and the entire Somali community in Camden are devastated. This is now the constant theme in our community. We are made to believe that the police are here to protect us, but how does a mother feel her kids are protected when she has lost two in the same vicinity within months? “We have lots of questions and need answers. Somebody has to listen to us.”
Friends of Sadiq paid tribute to the ambitious young student. A close friend told the New Journal: “He was the most humble, caring and loving man. He was a family man. He gave so much more spirit to the people he was around, he would come and brighten up a room without trying to, he had the brightest of futures and it breaks my heart hearing his passing. He will forever be remembered and cherished for the great man he was.”
Police tape off Malden Road this week
Other friends remembered happy times shared at Haverstock School. One wrote online: “R.I.P To my Bro Sadiq Man. From Haverstock You always had man creasing, all them fifa sessions and ICT lessons… Fam you will be missed my guy.” Aydarus Ahmed won praise for speaking out against reprisal attacks after his son Mohamed Abdullahi’s death.
He told the New Journal: “We have been in the court on Monday to start the trial and the next day he’s gone. I can’t describe how I feel. I don’t know what is going on in Camden these days.” Mr Ahmed, who has campaigned against knife crime since his son’s death, said: “Something needs to be done to stop it. I will continue to try to change this kind of culture.”
Sadiq Ahmed’s uncle Aydarus, whose own son Mohamed Abdullahi was killed in 2013, met council leader Georgia Gould at the end of last year
He added: “In our community now, our young people go to work and education, their daily routine, and we worry they won’t come back. “It is so scary. We want to know, what is behind this? Why is this happening to our young people. For them to be dying in this kind of violence, something needs to be done.”
His thoughts were echoed by parents who attended a public meeting last night (Wednesday) at Queen’s Crescent Community Centre, 500 metres from the scene of Mr Aadam’s death.
At the meeting, council leader Georgia Gould, MP Keir Starmer and police borough commander Nick Davies were told of the parents’ fears for their children’s safety. In a joint statement, the three said: “The safety of our young people and the need to tackle the long-term causes of youth violence in Camden is our absolute priority.” It is believed that last night’s violence followed an escalation of threats and taunts on social media.
Mr Ahmed said police must be given a way to monitor activity on social media. “Social media plays a big part in this,” he added. “If everybody knows before that it is going to happen, then the police should know too.” Officers were granted extra “Section 60” stop-and-search powers last night (Wednesday) in an bid to prevent any further violence.
Four men were arrested after police searched their car and found a Rambo-style knife and two baseball bats. Inspector Paul Clarke, of Camden Police said: “There will be an increased police presence and an increase in the activity of the gangs unit to reduce the possibility that anyone may consider retaliatory action.”
He added: “If anyone in the community knows anything about the incidents or the possibility of any ongoing occurrences they should contact police and let us know, so that we can help to save lives before this kind of tragedy is repeated.”