Two Pakistani-Spanish sisters aged 21 and 24 were killed by in-laws and other family members in the eastern Pakistani province of Punjab for filing for divorce from their husbands after forced marriages.

Aneesa and Arooj Abbas were strangled and then shot and killed on Friday night in the village of Nathia, in the Gujrat district.

Nuaman Hussain, a spokesman for the local police, specified that both sisters, along with their mother, had returned from Spain on 19 May. According to him, the young women had been married to their cousins a year ago and now they wanted to get a divorce to get married of their own free will in Europe.

The police explained that the two sisters were, therefore, killed for "honor", a brutal practice whereby a woman is killed for dishonoring her family.

Azra Bibi, mother of the victims , said she was kept away from the crime scene. However , he did not file a complaint against the murder of his daughters.

THE INVESTIGATIONS - The police opened a case against seven relatives of the victims and two other people , all fugitives.

The murder of the two sisters took place in the same district of Punjab where the Italian-Pakistani Sana Cheema , 26, was killed by her father and brother in 2019.

Born in Pakistan and lived in Brescia, Sana Cheema wanted to marry an Italian-Pakistani but her family opposed it. Sana's father, brother and uncle were arrested in connection with her murder, but later a Gujrat court acquitted them for lack of evidence.

Every year hundreds of women are killed on charges of "dishonor" in Pakistan. In 2021, over 400 cases of "honor killing" were reported in the Asian country.

(Unioneonline / vl)

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