Lancashire

Men on run after family killed at cemetery in Pakistan

Mohammed Yousaf and his daughter Tanya
Image caption The family were caught up in a marriage dispute

Two brothers, believed to have been part of a four-strong gang who shot dead a Lancashire family in Pakistan, have gone missing, police have said.

Mohammad Yousaf, 51, his wife Pervez, 49, and daughter Tanya, 23, were killed at a cemetery near Gujrat on Thursday.

The suspects, believed to be Mrs Yousaf's nephews, were released on "protective bail" but have failed to attend court.

Eileen Anwar, a close relative, feared "justice would not be done".

The family, who had been praying in the cemetery at the time, were surrounded and shot a number of times.

One of the gunmen was also killed and another was arrested shortly after the incident.

The two suspects on the run, Naveed Arif and his brother Sheraz Arif, applied for protective bail over the weekend.

'Half a job'

If a suspect is granted protective bail it means they cannot be arrested until they have had their case heard in court.

However, now police in Gujrat are urging them to surrender after they failed to show up on Tuesday.

Their mother, Rafiquat Bibi, has been charged with incitement to murder after she was allegedly heard saying the killers had only done "half a job" following the murders.

She has been remanded in custody until the investigation has finished, local police confirmed.

The killings are believed to have been triggered by a divorce between Mr Yousaf's son and a girl in the nearby village.

Muhammed Anwar, a relative of Mr and Mrs Yousaf, witnessed the shooting.

He said two groups of attackers had been waiting for the family - inside and outside the cemetery.

Tariq Abbas Qureshi, Gujrat police chief, said the killings were premeditated and carried out by heavily armed attackers.

Mrs Anwar, who lives and works in Nelson in Lancashire close to where the victims lived, said "the whole family was absolutely horrified".

At least 70 family members flew out to Pakistan on the Thursday evening, to attend the funerals the following day.

She said that a special service, usually held 30 days after the funeral, had been brought forward for security reasons.

"We are terrified they will come back and shoot more of the family. I will be a lot happier when we get them all home.

"It is absolutely sick, sick. They say it was an honour killing - where is the honour in this? Surrounding and murdering an innocent family?"

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites