Catholic priest targeted in acid attack in Zanzibar

Locals look at newspaper headlines in Stone Town, where two young British women suffered an acid attack, on the Indian Ocean island of Zanzibar on 9 August 2013. The Zanzibar authorities offered a financial reward for information on an acid attack on two British women in August

Related Stories

A Roman Catholic priest in Zanzibar has received treatment in hospital after attackers threw acid at him on a street in the island's capital, police say.

Elderly priest Joseph Anselmo Mwagambwa was attacked as he was leaving an internet cafe in the island's old town.

It follows a similar attack on two young British women there last month.

Tensions between the majority Muslim population and Christians have been on the increase in recent years, as well as on mainland Tanzania.

"He sustained burns in his face and shoulders. The acid burnt through his shirt," Zanzibar police spokesman Mohamed Mhina told Reuters.

Tanzanian police say they are searching for witnesses to the attack which occurred in the old part of Zanzibar City, Stone Town, on Friday afternoon.

Map of Zanzibar Tourism is a key source of revenue, with some 200,000 visitors to Zanzibar last year

It is the latest in a series of assaults on religious figures in the country and the fifth acid attack since November, when a Muslim cleric was hospitalised with acid burns.

In a sign of further tension, a Catholic priest was shot dead in February.

The attack on the British girls in August occurred in the same part of Stone Town.

Zanzibar's President Ali Mohammed Shein said the assault had "brought chaos and confusion to our country and outside".

Zanzibari officials offered a £4,000 ($6,000) reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspects.

A popular tourist destination, the acid attacks came as a shock to many residents of Zanzibar who say attacks on foreign travellers are rare.

Police say no suspects have been arrested over the attack on the priest.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Africa stories

RSS

Features

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.