Irish air hostess faces jail in Dubai after alleged domestic attack and suicide attempt

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-Credit: (Image: No credit)


An Irish flight attendant is stuck in Dubai, facing charges of alcohol consumption and attempted suicide.

Taoiseach Simon Harris has pledged to intervene on behalf of Tori Towey, 28, from County Roscommon. Activists argue that despite being a victim of an alleged assault in her own home, Tori is accused of breaking strict laws in the predominantly Muslim country.

Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald named Ms Towey's husband as the alleged attacker last Tuesday, stating she was a victim of "the most gross domestic violence". Human rights advocates reveal that after receiving hospital treatment for severe bruising and other injuries, she tried to leave the Middle Eastern country but was detained.

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Campaign group Detained in Dubai warned that Tori could face time in a prison notorious for "human rights abuses and torture". It called on the Irish government to intervene and demand the charges be dropped, according to the Irish Mirror.

In response to the situation, the Taoiseach promised to "intervene and see how we can support an Irish citizen" caught up in "the most appalling circumstances". Deputy Lou McDonald brought this distressing case to light after speaking with Tori herself, reports Dublin Live.

She also told the Dail that "her passport has been destroyed" and a "travel ban was imposed on her".

Sinn Fein President Mary Lou McDonald has voiced her concern over the distressing situation of an Irish woman in Dubai, stating: "Following one particularly severe beating in which her husband repeatedly tried to break her arm, Tori escaped upstairs and she attempted to take her own life. Tori now faces charges in Dubai of attempted suicide and the abuse of alcohol."

"The system over there, rather than protecting this woman, who is an Irish citizen, chose instead to detain her, to charge her. She's now under the most incredible stress. I spoke to her. Her mother Caroline has travelled to be with her. Tori wants to come home, simple as that. She's a Roscommon woman. She wants to come home."

McDonald continued, urging for immediate action: "I'm asking now, as a matter of absolute urgency, that we have a statement from this House; that you intervene, Taoiseach; that the Ambassador comes in and that you explain to the authorities of Dubai that no woman should be treated in this way. That an Irish citizen, an Irish woman will not be treated in this way."

Echoing the call for intervention, Roscommon TD Claire Kerrane demanded that Tori be allowed to return to Ireland, expressing her worry online: "This is absolutely frightening. I have been in touch with [Tanaiste] Micheal Martin and I will be raising this in the Dail. The Government needs to intervene on this urgently."

"Tori Towey must be released and allowed to return home to Roscommon urgently. This young woman has been treated in the most horrific way and simply wants to go home. I am determined to work with the Ambassador, Foreign Affairs Minister, and anyone necessary to ensure that her release is secured without delay."

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Tori Towey detained in Dubai -Credit:No credit

Disturbing images have emerged online showing Tori, originally from Boyle in Roscommon, with severe bruising on her arms. Radha Stirling, the head of Detained in Dubai, told the Irish Mirror: "Tori and her mother are in Dubai and it's illegal for them to talk to the media."

Further backing comes from local political figures, as Stirling highlighted: "Their local TD has committed to help. Deputy Kerrane responded in record time for calls to help. So heartwarming to see such support. We need Tori home in Ireland."

Expressing appreciation, Stirling passed on a message to Deputy Kerrane: "You are a gem. I've passed [your support] on to Tori and her mum and they are ever thankful."

Tori, a graduate of Dublin Institute of Technology, moved to Dubai in April last year to join Emirates Airlines. After alleged assaults, she tried to leave Dubai, but her ordeal continued, as outlined by Stirling.

Stirling shared the troubling account: "The thing she remembers is an ambulance crew and police waking her up. She was taken to Al Barsha police station and kept for several hours. Her mother pleaded to the Irish Consulate, but in the absence of their assistance, she boarded a flight to Dubai."

"Tori arranged to fly home to Ireland but when she arrived at the airport, she was told there was a travel ban. She attended the police station. She was assured that the travel ban would be lifted, but it never happened. She was stuck. Tori's experience is nothing short of tragic and, quite frankly, she is lucky to be alive."

Stirling believed there were echoes of neglect throughout the entire situation: "The Irish Embassy and the UAE medical and police services could certainly have done more to help Tori. She was moments from death."

Stirling also emphasised the severe urgency of Tori's case since her court appearance is imminent: "The case against her is going to court on July 18. She has been charged with attempted suicide and alcohol consumption."

Stirling issued a heartfelt plea for swift action to aid in Tori's dire situation: "We are calling on Dubai authorities to urgently drop the charges against Tori, remove the travel ban, and let her fly home to Ireland with her mother. We are also calling on Ireland's Taoiseach Simon Harris, the head of Foreign Affairs Micheal Martin, ambassador Alison Milton, and local TDs to help bring Tori home."

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