Australian actress, boyfriend fly out of Mumbai

November 28th, 2008 - 12:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Nov 28 (IANS) Australian soap opera actress Brooke Satchwell and her film editor boyfriend David Gross were Friday on a flight to Singapore after a harrowing 36 hours in India’s financial capital Mumbai, still battling a coordinated terror attack that began two nights ago. Satchwell was at the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower hotel Wednesday night when gunshots and grenade attacks by militants turned the luxury hotel into a war zone.

The former star of the popular Australian soap opera “Neighbours” was in India for a three-week film shoot and had hid for up to an hour in a cupboard in a toilet on the ground floor before she was rescued by hotel staff.

“From what I know, yes [she is one of the few Australians to leave]… But I haven’t been told a lot. She was one of the few [to get out of the country] - I don’t know how that happened, I don’t know how they got out,” her agent Sarah Linsten was quoted as saying by the Australian Associated Press (AAP) news agency.

At least three members of the 12 person New South Wales state trade delegation are still said to be holed up inside the Oberoi Trident Hotel.

According to AAP, a spokesperson for Australia Asia Flight Training, which sent a delegate to Mumbai, confirmed their representative had not left his room since the attacks began Wednesday night IST and had no food or information from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Satchwell and her boyfriend have also criticised the Australian government for lack of support for Australian nationals caught in the mayhem and have told the local media that the British and American officials had been more helpful.

Up to 26 Australians are believed to be trapped in the Taj Mahal Palace and Oberoi Trident hotels, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

At least six foreigners were amongst the 125 people killed in the brazen terror attack that targeted some of Mumbai’s best known landmarks.

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