UAE drops charges against Roscommon woman
5 mins read

UAE drops charges against Roscommon woman

UAE drops charges against Roscommon womanTori Towey's group arrested in DubaiDetained in a group in Dubai

Irish woman Tori Towey found herself in ‘most horrific situation’ in UAE, Dáil heard

Police in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have dropped charges against Irish woman Tori Towey and closed the case, it has been confirmed.

The 28-year-old from Roscommon has been charged with, among other things, attempted suicide, drinking alcohol and destroying her passport.

She worked as a stewardess in Dubai, the largest city in the United Arab Emirates.

Dubai’s Attorney General’s Office confirmed to the BBC that it had dropped the case.

Radha Stirling, a lawyer and human rights campaigner who runs the group Detained in Dubai, said Ms Towey and her mother were “over the moon” at the news.

“We are always grateful for the widespread support from the public, media and the Irish Government,” she said. wrote on Xformerly Twitter.

“We hope that her transit at the airport will go smoothly and that no further attempts will be made to detain her in the country.”

The travel ban has been lifted

Earlier, Irish Prime Minister Simon Harris said the travel ban that prevented Ms Towey from leaving the United Arab Emirates had been lifted.

“The embassy will take Tori to the airport as soon as she is ready to travel,” he told the Dáil (the lower house of the Irish parliament).

“The embassy will of course continue to monitor the matter, which is still ongoing… and I would like to thank our embassy for the work it has done to resolve it.”

UAE drops charges against Roscommon womanReuters Agency Simon HarrisReuters Agency

Prime Minister Simon Harris has promised to intervene on Tori Towey’s behalf.

Earlier, the Irish Prime Minister said that “the way in which the Irish citizen is being treated is completely unacceptable.”

Mr Harris also said he had spoken to Ms Towey and her mother, who is with her in the United Arab Emirates.

He added that Ms Towey “was the victim of violence at the hands of a man”.

“I think what Tori went through is unimaginable to many people in this country. A woman who was the victim of a brutal attack woke up not in a hospital but in a police station,” he said.

“You want to start a new chapter”

On Wednesday, Ann Flynn, Mrs Towey’s aunt, told BBC Radio Foyle’s North West Today programme that Tori and her family had suffered a terrible tragedy but that she hoped the end was near.

“The lifting of the travel ban is a huge relief, I honestly didn’t quite believe it when I heard about it,” Ms Flynn said.

“We hope they’ll be home tomorrow. They don’t really have a flight scheduled yet, and we’re just waiting for the next steps.”

Ms Flynn praised all those who helped publicise her niece’s case.

“When they get to Ireland, they will feel a huge sense of relief,” she said.

“We just want her to come home, we want to start a new chapter with her.”

Timeline: How Tori Towey’s Story Unfolded

  • June 28 – Ms Towey charged with attempted suicide after alleged assault
  • July 9 – Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald raises her situation in the Dáil and says her passport has been destroyed and she has been barred from travelling
  • Prime Minister Simon Harris said the Irish government would do everything it could to help Ms Towey
  • July 10 – Mr Harris says he has spoken to Ms Towey and she is increasingly positive about the situation
  • The Prime Minister later confirmed the travel ban had been lifted and that she was preparing to travel to the airport and home to Ireland.
  • Dubai Public Prosecutor’s Office confirms case against Ms Towey has been dropped

“The most serious case of domestic violence”

The case gained international attention after Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald raised it in the Dáil (the lower house of the Irish parliament) on Tuesday.

She added that Ms Towey’s mother had travelled to Dubai to be with her and she “wants to come home”.

“She was a victim of the most serious domestic violence,” Ms McDonald said.

“Her passport was destroyed. She was banned from traveling.”

The Irish Government should “make it absolutely clear to the Dubai authorities that no woman should be treated in this way,” Ms McDonald told the Dáil, adding that “an Irish citizen, an Irish woman, will not be treated in this way.”

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it was aware of the matter and would provide consular assistance.

  • If any of the issues raised in this story concern you, you can visit BBC’s Line of Action.