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Dublin: 5 °C Thursday 2 October, 2014

Two British teenagers attacked with acid on volunteering trip to Zanzibar

Two teenagers volunteering at an orphanage on the African island had acid thrown at them as they walked through a popular tourist area.

Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete, left, accompanied with the Medical Director of Aga Khan Hospital-Dar es Salaam, Jaffer Dharsee, right, leave the hospital, after he had visited the two British women
Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete, left, accompanied with the Medical Director of Aga Khan Hospital-Dar es Salaam, Jaffer Dharsee, right, leave the hospital, after he had visited the two British women
Image: AP Photo/Khalfan Said

THE MOTHER OF one of two young women attacked with acid on the African island of Zanzibar has called on British authorities to get her daughter home.

Assailants on the East African island of Zanzibar threw acid on two British women volunteering at an orphanage on the Tanzanian island, police said today. The two teenagers have been identified as Katie Gee and Kirstie Trup, both from London.

Speaking to Sky News, Nicky Gee said that her daughter had received burns to her “whole face and body”, adding that the family were having a “real problem” getting the girls home.

The attackers, riding on a moped, threw the acid on the women’s faces and arms as they were walking, said Mkadam Khamis, a police commander on the island.

The attack took place on Wednesday night in an area of the island’s capital city known as Stone Town, an area popular with tourists.

The women were transferred to Tanzania’s commercial capital, Dar es Salaam, for medical treatment. The pair were volunteer teaching at an orphanage affiliated with the Anglican Church, Khamis said.

Acid attacks scar their victims and Zanzibar has experienced a bout of religiously motivated violence in recent months, though authorities did not immediately provide a motive for the attack.

The attack against the Britons is at least the third serious acid attack in Zanzibar since last year, but the first on foreigners.

“We are looking for the attackers, and we are expanding our police networks in and outside the country to make sure we apprehend them”, said Khamis.

A spokeswoman for Britain’s Foreign Office said Britain is aware of the incident and is providing consular assistance to the women.

Associated Press contributed additional reporting.

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