Lancashire

Preston sisters killed in Pakistan gas leak 'inseparable'

Nadia and Maria Rehman Image copyright Family Handout
Image caption The sisters were overcome by a gas leak from a boiler, police said

Two sisters who died in a gas leak in Pakistan were laughing and joking on the phone hours before their death, their sister has said.

Nadia, 18, and Maria Rehman, 24, were found collapsed in a house in Daulat Nagar, Gujrat on 12 January.

Police in Gujrat said the sisters, from Preston, died as a result of a leak from a boiler in the bathroom and there were no suspicious circumstances.

Saria Rehman said Nadia "loved going out" and Maria was like a "second mum".

'Did everything together'

The sisters were staying with relatives to mark the anniversary of their grandfather's death.

Saria told BBC Asian Network she initially refused to believe it when one of her other two sisters broke the news of the tragedy.

"I'd spoken to them on the same night and we were all joking over the phone."

Saria said the sisters were inseparable and "did everything together" when they were growing up.

Image copyright Instagram
Image caption Maria (left) was like a "second mum" and Nadia "loved going out"

The 23-year-old said her older sister Maria "always protected us".

She said she worked for TV Licensing and had recently started modelling and loved it "because she liked getting dressed up".

Her younger sister Nadia was studying at college and wanted a career in teaching and to travel the world, she said.

Saria rejected rumours circulating on social media that the deaths were "honour killings", saying that "doesn't make sense".

She said that while both married men in Pakistan, when the relationships did not work it was her father who arranged their divorces.

"When I met my current husband it was a love marriage... my parents were really happy with us guys getting married [and] they always gave us that freedom."

The Foreign Office confirmed officers had been in touch with the family to offer assistance.

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