February 28, 2017

WASHINGTON – The Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) mourns the loss of Srinivas Kuchibhotla who was murdered this past week in Olathe, Kansas. Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani, Asian Indian immigrants, were both targeted by a Caucasian shooter because he believed they were of Middle East descent. The shooter allegedly screamed “get out of my country,” prior to shooting them. Madasani is recovering from a gunshot wound, as well as Ian Grillot, who was shot attempting to stop the shooter.

Last week’s tragedy was not unlike the 1982 murder of Chinese American Vincent Chin who was killed by out-of-work Caucasian autoworkers who blamed Japan for their employment situation. Chin, like Kuchibhota and Madasani, was targeted due to xenophobia and racism.

This is not just a tragic loss in our community, but another alarming event that adds to the recent rise of violence and hate speech against people of color. Racism, xenophobia and any other hate filled actions have no place in our country, our communities or our laws and policies.

APIAHF stands against hate and violence in any form and calls upon state and federal authorities to investigate this murder and attack as a hate crime.