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Two held for Birmingham Asian deaths

Two people, including a teenager, have been charged with the murder of three British Asians who were run over by a car while guarding their neighbourhood from looters and rioters in Birmingham.

world Updated: Aug 14, 2011 15:25 IST

Two people, including a teenager, have been charged with the murder of three British Asians who were run over by a car while guarding their neighbourhood from looters and rioters in Birmingham.

Joshua Donald, 26, was charged along with a 17-year-old male, with three counts of murder each in the death of Haroon Jahan and brothers Shazad Ali and Abdul Musavir. Haroon, 21, Ali, 30, and Musavir, 31, died when the car mowed them down on Wednesday morning.

A West Midlands Police spokeswoman said a 16-year-old boy and a 32-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder had been bailed pending further inquiries.

Two other men aged 23 and 27 who were arrested on Friday remain in police custody. Haroon's father, Tariq Jahan, 46, had emerged as an unlikely hero when he made an emotional plea to calm passions following his son's death. Anger had mounted in the Asian neighbourhood in Birmingham after the incident. "I would like to take this opportunity to appeal for witnesses to come forward and the police need as much help as possible," Jahan told reporters today.

He also thanked the community, especially the young people, for staying calm. Abdullah Khan, 58, the uncle of the two deceased brothers said that his nephews were "hard-working young men". "All they wanted to do was protect their business and other businesses in the community," he said. "What we want is justice for our family.

This was not about race, this was not about religion. This was about a pure criminal act." Shazad, he said, was looking forward to the birth of his first child in a few months but that was not meant to be.