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Deported Roma girl, family attacked

21 October 2013, 06:40

Kosovska Mitrovica - A Roma schoolgirl, whose deportation from France sparked controversy, and her family were attacked on Sunday by unidentified assailants in Kosovo where they have been living since their eviction, police said.

"The Dibrani [family] were walking in Mitrovica with their children when they were attacked by unknown" people, a police officer, who requested to remain anonymous, told AFP.

The mother of 15-year-old Leonarda, Xhemaili, was "beaten and is in hospital while the children, who are traumatised, are at a police station", the officer said.

Leonarda's father Resat Dibrani, 47, was at the hospital by his wife's side.

"It shows that the Dibranis are not safe here," the officer said.

On Saturday, French President Francois Hollande offered Leonarda the chance to go back to France, but without her family.

Hollande's offer was immediately rejected by the girl while her father said that the family, deported on  9 October, would not be divided and would return to France by any means.

Leonarda Dibrani's eviction caused an outcry in France because she was detained during a school trip before being deported with her family, and students took to the streets demanding she return and Interior Minister Manuel Valls resign.


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