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Sir Christopher Meyer was attacked at Victoria Station in London

His wife Catherine, a life peer, said Sir Christopher had been taking the Tube home when he was attacked at Victoria station.

“He looks terrible. His left eye is like a golf ball and bleeding. The nose looks like it could be broken.

“I’m absolutely shocked by the level of the brutality. They really beat him. It’s appalling, like something you would see in a war zone.”

Lady Meyer said her husband could not remember the attack, adding: “The first thing he remembers is the police.

“At first I thought it might be politically motivated. He is opinionated and sometimes people have different opinions. But the police told me they believe it is more likely they might have wanted to rob him.”

Nothing was taken, however.

British Transport Police said a 16-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl have been arrested on suspicion of assault causing grievous bodily harm.

They have been released under investigation while inquiries continue.

Police have called for witnesses to come forward and said Sir Christopher’s injuries “are not believed to be life-threatening or changing”.

Cambridge-educated Sir Christopher joined the Foreign Office in 1966.

He was British ambassador in Washington from 1997 until his retirement in 2003.

His time there coincided with the presidencies of Bill Clinton and George W Bush, the 9/11 terror attacks and wars in Kosovo and Afghanistan.

After retiring, he became chairman of the Press Complaints Commission, the former newspaper regulatory body.

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Victoria Station

He now appears regularly on TV as a political pundit.

He said earlier this week that Britain “should care” about what US President Donald Trump thinks, adding: “Forget the woolly, sentimentalised rhetoric of the ‘special relationship’, we are talking hard national interests here.

“The plain truth is that the US is our single most important partner and ally and President Trump is its democratically elected leader.”

Sir Christopher was changing Tube lines at Victoria on Wednesday afternoon when he was set upon.

Describing her husband’s condition, Lady Meyer said: “He is not allowed to eat or drink. He is a strong lad and his spirits are not bad. He has a patch over his left eye which has thankfully stopped bleeding.”

He is waiting to hear whether he will need surgery on his hand and face, she said, adding: “I am a wife who is angry that her husband has been badly beaten. As you get older it’s harder to recover from this sort of thing.”

Lady Meyer added: “I think we really need to stop this, if you can’t walk in London because of fear of being attacked brutally.

“Ninety-nine per cent of people are kind and nice but one per cent are nasty. We need to start doing something more aggressive against this type of violence. We need to be tougher.”

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