Stoned woman's husband condemns Pakistani police

WikimediaThe Lahore High Court in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan where Farzana was killed.

The husband of a Pakistani woman stoned to death by her family has condemned police for standing by and "silently watching" as his wife was brutally murdered.

25-year-old Farzana Parveen was killed outside a court building in Lahore, Pakistan after being attacked with bricks and sticks; hurled at her by her own family in a so-called 'honour killing'.

Even more shockingly, Ms Parveen was three months pregnant by her husband, Mohammad Iqbal, whom she had married against her parents' wishes. She had previously been engaged to her cousin through an arranged marriage, but, despite her Muslim father's disapproval, she fell in love with Mr Iqbal and they wed.

Ms Parveen was waiting outside Lahore High Court to contest kidnapping charges filed against her husband by her family on May 27 when she and Mr Iqbal were attacked.

She was later taken to hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Mr Iqbal has now spoken out against his wife's murder; branding police inaction as "shameful" and "inhuman".

In an interview with the BBC, Mr Iqbal recalls that members of the Pakistani police force were at the scene of the crime, but stood by rather than stepping in to stop the killing. "Police were silently watching. We were shouting for help, but nobody listened. One of my relatives took off his clothes to capture police attention but they didn't intervene," he says.

"They watched Farzana being killed and they didn't do anything.

"It's shameful; it's inhumane. We even called the police helpline but they said it was the wrong number."

Honour killings are commonplace in Pakistan; Pakistani women's rights organisation the Aurat Foundation reports that at least 1,000 women are murdered each year by their own families across the nation, but the true figure is thought to be significantly higher.

Ms Parveen's father, who has been quoted as saying he has "no regret" over the incident by a police investigator, has been arrested.