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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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