British girl, 7, killed while swimming on holiday 'after police chief hits her with speedboat'

5 August 2022, 14:18

Jonada was killed in a speedboat accident in Albania
Jonada was killed in a speedboat accident in Albania. Picture: Social media

By Will Taylor

A British girl has been killed while swimming on holiday when a speedboat driven by an off-duty police chief allegedly hit her.

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Jonada Avdia was in the water, about 15ft from the shore at Potam beach in southern Albania, when the boat's driver lost control and hit the seven-year-old, according to police there.

Her death sparked protests outside the Albanian Ministry of Interior, as calls emerged for the stacking of ministers including the minister of tourism, and the General Director of the Police.

Jonanda was from Barking in east London and had been visiting her parents' country.

The officer has been named as Arjan Tase, reportedly a police chief from Elbasan, a city in the centre of the country, south west of the capital Tirana. He is said to be due in court charged with manslaughter.

Read more: British woman killed and husband critical after speedboat crash in Turkey

Local media said the Albanian police watchdog stated that Tase had driven the boat towards Potam beach with his family aboard.

The Sun reports that a teacher, Bislim Ahmetaj, said on social media that he had spoken with the girl's father, Bledar, who told him: "I should have died and not Jonada."

Media in Albania said an authority that is responsible for guarding the coast and protecting against accidents, the Local Directorate for Border and Migration, had 15 of its staff fired, apparently consisting of its chain of command.