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  1. ITV Report

'Miracle' survival of girl shot by family in attempted honour killing in Pakistan

Saba Maqsood was left for dead by relatives who tried to kill her. Credit: ITV News

A Pakistani woman has survived being shot and dumped in a canal by her family in an attempted honour killing after she married the man she loved.

Saba Maqsood, 18, was bundled into a sack and left for dead in the water, but she managed to escape after the sack came open, local police told ITV News.

The teenager angered her family by marrying the man of her choice a few days ago - an act of defiance in a conservative part of Pakistan where women are expected to agree to arranged marriages.

ITV News Correspondent Lewis Vaughan Jones reports.

Maqsood told Reuters she still fears for her life and called for police protection.

"Even though police provided me with security, I fear that my family will try to kill me and my husband," she said.

Police said Maqsood was attacked and shot by her father, uncle, brother and aunt, and thrown into the waterway in the city of Hafizabad in Punjab province on Thursday.

Her relatives quickly fled the scene, but after minutes in the water Maqsood regained consciousness and managed to struggle to the bank, where two passers-by helped her.

The 18-year-old was injured in the face and hand after being shot. Credit: ITV News

Police constable Babar Ali told ITV News that Maqsood described her survival as a "miracle" when he tended to her by the canal.

The girl's surgeon, Dr Muhammad Atif Zafar, told ITV News Maqsood had "narrowly escaped death".

"Whoever tried to kill her aimed at her head, and maybe the shooter lost his aim," he said.

Maqsood's room in hospital is under police protection. Credit: ITV News

Conservative Pakistani families believe it is dishonourable for a woman to fall in love and choose her own husband and are prepared to kill their female relatives to protect their honour.

Last month, a Pakistani woman called Farzana Iqbal was attacked and killed by suspected family members because she had married the man she loved.