Two teenagers who were burned in an acid attack while volunteering to teach children in Zanzibar are due home.
Volunteers Katie Gee and Kirstie Trup, both 18, are expected back in London where they will be helped to overcome their terrifying ordeal by family and friends.
The pair were attacked by men on a motorbike as they walked along a road on the Indian Ocean island. The young women, from north London, were enjoying the last week of a trip as volunteer teachers to the predominantly Muslim island when a corrosive substance was thrown at them in an apparently unprovoked attack. They received burns to their faces, hands, legs, backs and necks, The Times reported.
Marc Trup, Miss Trup's father, told the newspaper the pair were "inconsolable" and still in pain when he spoke to them on a mobile phone lent to the girls by a passer-by after the attack. "We couldn't get anything out of them because they had been burned," he said. "Both girls are very shocked and very frightened."
Speaking about his daughter, he added: "She can still see and she is not dead. Whatever it is we will cope with it."
Speaking on behalf of the girls' mothers, Rochelle Trup and Nicky Gee, a family friend said: "Both families are extremely upset and distressed at this completely unprovoked attack on their lovely daughters, who had only gone to Zanzibar with good intention."
Mr Trup said the girls were dressed appropriately and had been warned not to wear anything which gave away their Jewish background, including the Star of David. He told the newspaper: "We know its a Muslim country, they were Western girls. Unfortunately they went out during the month of Ramadan. There has been a huge alert in African countries with potential threats. Maybe it's connected, maybe not."
The girls had originally planned to return in time to collect their A-Level results next week, with Miss Trup hoping to study history at the University of Bristol while Miss Gee is considering the University of Leeds, The Times reported.
Their flight home came as news emerged that Miss Gee had been attacked previously on the island. A friend, Oli Cohen, 21, told the Daily Telegraph: "Katie was attacked two weeks ago by a Muslim woman for singing during 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."
Zanzibar is an archipelago of islands in the Indian Ocean around 22 miles off the mainland. The semi-autonomous region of Tanzania is predominantly Muslim and has been the scene of some religious violence in recent years. Earlier this year two Christian leaders were killed and in November a cleric was treated in hospital after an acid attack.