DUBAI: Several armed men targeted a family from the United Arab Emirates by forcing their way into their London apartment, weeks after a similar attack in the British capital, state media in the Gulf nation and police said Wednesday.
The attacks have been front-page news in the UAE, where violent crime is rare. The country has long-standing ties to the United Kingdom, and London is a popular destination for Emirati tourists and other wealthy Arabs from the Gulf.
The Emirates’ ambassador to Britain, Abdul-Rahman Ghanem al-Mutaiwee, was quoted by the country’s official WAM news agency as saying that seven people were involved in the attack, some of them wielding hammers, knives and guns.
They stole money, jewelry and credit cards from the Emirati man and his wife, he said.
British police confirmed details of the robbery, saying it happened in the Paddington area of central London Tuesday. They said the victims were an Emirati couple and an Emirati acquaintance in their 40s and 50s.
No arrests have been made.
On April 6, a man entered a London hotel room and battered three sisters from the UAE. Police said theft was the apparent motive.
That attack drew the attention of the top leadership in the Emirates. The UAE dispatched a high-level government delegation and police officers to meet with the sisters’ family.
All three women in the hotel hammer incident are still in the hospital. One of the victims lost her left eye and has brain injuries, and is described as in “critical but stable condition,” according to police.
British police noted the “tragic coincidence” of the two attacks, but say there is no indication the latest victims were targeted because of their nationality.