Parents deny acid attack girls were disrespectful during Muslim festival

Kirstie Trup and Katie Gee

Kirstie Trup and Katie Gee

The parents of acid attack victims Kirstie Trup and Katie Gee have denied the girls were targeted because they were inappropriately dressed during a Muslim festival.
The two 18-year-olds, both from north-west London, were attacked in Zanzibar, east Africa, as the local population was observing Ramadan.

Mr Trup told reporters the girls were targeted “for no reason”. He said: “We know it’s a Muslim country. They weren’t dressed inappropriately because they know the rules.”

Miss Gee’s mother Nicky, 45, said: “They were dressed appropriately - they just attacked two young girls.

Two men on a moped threw acid at Katie Gee and Kirstie Trup as they walked through the island’s capital, Stone Town, on Wednesday night.

Five men are being questioned by local police concerning the attacks, but no one has been arrested.

The girls, who were both members of FZY, were in their last week of a volunteering programme arranged by company i-to-i. They were flown to hospital in Dar es Salaam with non-life threatening injuries to their hands, chests and faces and are expected to return home on a medical evacuation flight on Friday.

It is believed that both girls were careful not to wear anything that would identify them as Jewish.

According to local deputy police commissioner Mkadam Khamis, "the motive for the attack on the volunteers, aged 18 years, has not been established. Police in Zanzibar have launched a manhunt, and we ask for public assistance in identifying the attackers".

Both girls attended JFS.

There is evidence that there had been more than one previous incident between the girls and the locals.

Close friend Oli Cohen, 21, told reporters: "Katie was attacked two weeks ago by a Muslim woman for singing on Ramadan. She was shocked as it just came from out of the blue - but she wasn't scared enough to come home she stayed out there to finish her trip and volunteering.”

Last updated: 4:52pm, August 16 2013