Popular Pakistani female singer shot dead in Peshawar

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AFP) - Unknown gunmen shot dead a popular female singer in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar in the latest attack against women artistes, officials said on Thursday.

Ms Gulnar, 38, famous under her performing name Muskan, was shot by four gunmen who barged into her house on Wednesday. She died in hospital.

"The singer Gulnar has been shot dead," local police station chief Riazul Haq told AFP. "She had married three times and had some personal enmities."

Attacks against female singers are common in Pakistan's conservative north-western province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, where many consider the performing arts to be unIslamic.

A young actress suffered burn injuries in June last year when she had acid hurled at her while she was sleeping. The 18-year-old, known as Bushra and popular in the northwest for her film, television and theatre appearances, was attacked at her home in the town of Nowshera, 150 kilometres north-west of Islamabad.

Popular Pakistani singer Ghazala Javed, 24, was shot dead by gunmen as she left a beauty salon in Peshawar two years ago over a dispute with her ex-husband.

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