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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 May, 2004, 16:40 GMT 17:40 UK
Police probe into 'revenge rape'
Police in Pakistan's Punjab province have formally accused seven people of aiding and abetting a revenge rape on two women.

A landowner reportedly attacked the women after discovering that his own daughter had illicit relations with the brother of one of the women.

The women and the brother come from a poor family.

Police say the landowner's attack was authorised by a village assembly to avenge his honour.

The village assembly, or panchayat, met on 30 April, and consisted of around 50 people from the landowner's clan, police say.


The revenge decision was then publicised over loudspeakers in the southern Punjab village, according to the police.

They say the women - one in her late teens, and her sister-in-law - were taken forcibly to an outhouse and raped while some of the landlord's relatives guarded the premises.

One man, one of the landlord's brothers, has been formally arrested, according to the police.

Human rights organisations in Pakistan have mentioned hundreds of honour killings and cases of rape as an act or revenge.

Nearly two years ago four men were sentenced to death for the gang rape, again authorised by a Punjab village council. of a woman, and two of the council members accused of abetting the crime also received the death sentence.

Their appeals are still pending.

Eight other council members were tried and acquitted.

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