Abducted girl reunited with mother

Atiya Anjum-Wilkinson was abducted by her father in November 2009 (Greater Manchester Police/PA)

Gemma Wilkinson after being reunited with her daughter Atiya Anjum-Wilkinson

First published in National News © by

A six-year-old girl who was abducted by her father on her third birthday and taken to Pakistan has been reunited with her mother.

Atiya Anjum-Wilkinson vanished in November 2009 after going to stay with her father, Razwan Ali Anjum.

The former insurance salesman said he was taking Atiya to Southport. Instead he took her to Lahore, Pakistan, and told Gemma Wilkinson - Atiya's mother - that she was "never going to see Atiya again".

But on Friday night, during an emotional reunion, mother and daughter finally came face-to-face after the youngster was tracked down and flown to Manchester Airport.

An emotional Ms Wilkinson spoke to members of the press in the Crowne Plaza Hotel at Manchester Airport shortly after she was reunited with her daughter. During the 20-minute interview, Ms Wilkinson broke down in tears as she described the moment she saw Atiya after more than three years apart.

She said: "I am just absolutely overwhelmed at seeing Atiya now and giving her a cuddle and a massive kiss. I am just absolutely overwhelmed.

"We have gone from not knowing where Atiya is to finding out that we do know where Atiya is, to receiving pictures of Atiya and how she looks now, to Atiya coming here and Atiya actually being here. It's just been an absolute whirlwind."

Ms Wilkinson added: "It was very emotional. She is how I expected. She looks exactly the same as she did three years ago, she is just taller and a bit older."

Ms Wilkinson said she did have a "few fears" that Atiya would be unsettled with the change and the flight but added: "She is absolutely fine. She is trying to communicate and she is playing with the things that we have bought for her. She's settled."

Describing the moment they met again, she said: "She had a big smile on her face. Atiya was told that I was mummy and she said 'Mummy' and smiled."

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree