Skip to main content

Priest in Zanzibar attacked with acid in third such incident in two months

From Farouk Karim, for CNN
updated 5:00 AM EDT, Sun September 15, 2013
The acid attack on the priest was the third such unprovoked assault in Zanzibar in two months.
The acid attack on the priest was the third such unprovoked assault in Zanzibar in two months.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Rev. Joseph Anselmo Mwagambwa tells CNN he was sprayed with acid
  • He was coming out of an Internet cafe in city of Zanzibar
  • Last month, acid was thrown on two U.K. women, both 18, while visiting Stone Town
  • An Arab businessman who built a mall near U.S. Embassy was hit with acid

Zanzibar, Tanzania (CNN) -- A Catholic priest was attacked with acid on the east African island of Zanzibar in the third such unprovoked assault in two months, and remained hospitalized Saturday, the cleric told CNN.

The Rev. Joseph Anselmo Mwagambwa said he was attacked Friday afternoon while coming out of an internet cafe in Mlandenge, a community in the city of Zanzibar.

He was being treated in a hospital in the Tanzanian mainland city of Dar es Salaam.

Police are still investigating, and no arrests have been made.

Last month, two British women, both 18, were walking unaccompanied on a street when acid was thrown on their faces, chests and hands by two men on a motorcycle in Zanzibar, officials said.

Katie Gee and Kirstie Trup were attacked in Stone Town, the island's historic center, and had been working as volunteer teachers on the island, according to the firm i-to-i Travel. Stone Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site popular with tourists.

The attack against the two women came as Islamist extremism is rising in the area. The government said it would consider regulating the purchase of acid and other related products, and warned that such attacks could seriously damage the island's tourism industry.

In another incident in July, a businessman of Arab origin who had built a mall close to the American Embassy in Dar es Salaam was also injured in an acid attack, Tanzanian media reported.

Zanzibar is a semi-autonomous part of Tanzania. According to the CIA World Factbook, the population of Zanzibar is 99% Muslim, while the residents of mainland Tanzania are split roughly evenly among Christian, Muslim and indigenous beliefs.

India acid attack victim fights for justice

CNN's Michael Martinez contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:39 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Tethered to an IV drip, 71-year-old Shin Young Ja lies under a thin fleece blanket, nursing a broken back and wracked with survivor's guilt.
updated 7:23 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Family members of the missing passengers are pinning slim hopes on floundering air pockets.
updated 12:14 PM EDT, Thu April 17, 2014
An Iranian mother slaps and then forgives her 17-year old son's murderer in dramatic scenes at the gallows.
updated 7:35 AM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
An "extraordinary" video shows what looks like the largest and most dangerous gathering of al Qaeda in years.
updated 8:30 AM EDT, Mon April 14, 2014
Explore each side's case, reconstructed from Pistorius' court affidavit and the prosecution's case during last year's bail hearing.
updated 8:37 AM EDT, Wed April 16, 2014
Mentions of the 1989 Tiananmen Square student protests or political reform are still censored in China.
updated 5:34 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
The Hadza are one of the last communities of hunter-gatherers in the world -- but losing their land.
updated 9:22 PM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
In choosing to change a traditional practice, Francis is being as radical as Jesus was in his own time.
updated 7:13 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Too weak. Can't handle pressure. Unattractive to sponsors. Susie Wolff has heard it all.
updated 10:49 PM EDT, Sat April 19, 2014
Browse through images you don't always see on news reports from CNN teams around the world.
updated 8:30 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
It's like finding a needle in a universe-wide haystack. Researchers have located a planet roughly the size of Earth that could be habitable.
updated 5:40 AM EDT, Fri April 18, 2014
Dubai, long champion of all things biggest, longest and most expensive, will soon have some competition from a neighboring country.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT