Japanese tourists attacked in Rotorua park

5:59 pm on 1 November 2016

Two Japanese tourists were attacked in a Rotorua park on Saturday night, with the male victim suffering a broken jaw in the assault.

Police are seeking witnesses after the man and woman were assaulted by three men in Kuirau Park between 6pm and 6.30pm on Saturday night.

The man was punched in the face and had his jaw broken, while the woman was pushed over.

The attackers - described as Māori - are believed to have been travelling in a large blue vehicle.

They stole a grey Puma bag, containing an iPad Air, iPhone 5, camera and cash.

A Rotorua hotel owner said it was disappointing.

Treen McLeay, the owner of the Backyard Inn, which is near Kiurau Park, said such incidents could affect how New Zealand was seen as a tourist destination.

The Mayor of Rotorua said the attack was distressing and they would consider what more could be done to improve safety.

Mayor Steve Chadwick said she was proud of the work done with police to improve safety in the tourist destination, but there was always more that could be done.

Ms Chadwick said there had been no other attacks on tourists in Rotorua recently, and the city was no less safe than other destinations.