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Last Updated: Tuesday, 3 May, 2005, 16:15 GMT 17:15 UK
Beauty students cheer Iraq victim
Hannan in the beauty salon
Hannan undergoes treatment in the college's beauty salon
Trainee beauticians at a Scottish college have been pampering an Iraqi teenager who was badly burned during an air attack in her home country.

Students at Telford College in Edinburgh invited Hannan Shihab, 17, who has been undergoing plastic surgery, to their training salon.

The college said the aim was to provide more than a beauty therapy.

Tutor Pauline Robertson said students had been trained in complementary therapies which can assist recovery.

The students and staff offered Hannan, from Baghdad, the treatment after reading about her situation in newspapers.

Hannan was at home with her parents, two brothers and sister on 7 April, 2003, when a bomb from a US military aircraft exploded nearby.

The vibration from the blast knocked a kerosene lamp onto her bed, setting it alight.

Our students are trained in complementary therapies, which can help relax a client, help them feel better about themselves and promote a general sense of well-being
Pauline Robertson
College tutor

The teenager suffered horrific burns but there was a limit to what doctors in war-torn Iraq could do.

Katrina Turner, from Bonnyrigg, became aware of her plight and persuaded experts to treat her at St John's Hospital in Livingston.

Hannan recently underwent reconstructive facial surgery at the hospital and students invited her for treatment to boost her confidence and self-esteem.

Ms Robertson, assistant head of leisure industries training, said: ''Many people mistakenly think that beauty therapy is just about learning how to put on lipstick or false nails - that couldn't be further from the truth.

'Medical work'

''Our students are trained in complementary therapies, which can help relax a client, help them feel better about themselves and promote a general sense of well-being.

"Our therapies sit alongside the medical profession and in Hannan's case we were able to use our skills to complement some of the expert medical work that is being carried out by her surgeon."

Following the treatment, Hannan said: ''I'm feeling much better. Thanks so much to all the people who've helped me in the UK and especially here in Scotland."

Despite health problems of her own, 45-year-old Ms Turner secured treatment for Hannan and arranged flights and visas for her and her father Muaid. The teenager has been staying with her between spells in hospital.

She has also lobbied the prime minister and Scottish Executive, urging them to bring more young conflict victims to the UK for treatment.

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