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Diplomats dash to rescue 15-year-old British girl from threat of forced marriage in Pakistan
by Colin Freeman
New laws will come into force this week to help young British women of Asian background who are forced into marriage against their will. Diplomats rescued one such 15-year-old before it was too late.
Standing amid the chickens that peck the courtyard dust of her home in a remote Kashmiri village, Shafaq Malik looks just like the dutiful young Pakistani wife her father wants her to become.
Her pretty features framed by a lace headscarf draped over a maroon gown, she stands out from her aunts and cousins for just thing: the broad Leeds accent that gives away her previous life as an English schoolgirl. Right now, it is also a life to which she may be about to return – courtesy of two British diplomats who have come to save her from the wedding which her father wants to force upon her.
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