THE family of a young girl who drowned in the River Irwell while out playing with friends have vowed to continue fighting for justice, after an inquest ruled her death was accidental.

Shukri Abdi died in June 2019 after the girl she was swimming with, referred to as Child One, lost contact with her.

A coroner at Rochdale Coroner’s Court ruled this week that the other child knew that she could not swim and took her into deep water, and that a duty of care existed which was breached.

Coroner Joanne Kearsley found though that the death was not the result of a gross negligence manslaughter and she did not mean to harm Shukri in any way.

But the family held a press conference in the aftermath of the outcome and said they could keep fighting for justice.

Speaking on behalf of the family, lawyer Attiq Malik said it was a legal anomaly which mean the facts of the case could not lead to manslaughter.

He said: “The judgement was extremely comprehensive, 37 pages in length, almost two hours long, it’s not often you see coroner’s give that sort of judgement.

“The court of public opinion can see for itself what happened. There’s no need for speculation or rumour.

“If ever there was a case where the facts spoke for themselves this is that case.

“We fought for an outcome of unlawful killing by gross negligence manslaughter.

“The coroner agreed with us, 90 per cent of the tests needed to be satisfied for gross negligence manslaughter were satisfied, if was found in our favour.

“You may ask if it was found in our favour why was the verdict accidental death.

“It’s because of an anomaly in the law in the final part.

“Just a few weeks ago the High Court handed out a decision to coroner’s court in these sorts of case, the new decision is it is no longer a criminal standard for unlawful killing … it is now a civil standard.

“There is a question mark of whether the final part of the gross negligence manslaughter case even applied or not.”

He added that his team’s submissions were brief because they knew the case would be going to a higher authority.

When asked if the family accepted the result of the inquest he said they did not.

He said: “They do not accept it was a tragic accident.”

Speaking briefly Zam Zam Ture, said: “I won’t stop trying to contest this, I know what happened to my daughter.”

Coroner Mrs Kearsley said Child One was “naïve” and “foolish” but had underestimated the danger so a verdict of accidental death was the correct judgement.

She added she hoped now the facts of the case have been established the family would focus on their memories of Shukri.