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Autistic children 'killed by mother'

A Pakistani-born mother accused of strangling her two young children told an emergency operator she killed them because they were autistic.

US police released the recording after Saiqa Akhter was charged with the murder of her son Zain Akhter (5). She also faces a murder charge over her daughter Faryaal Akhter (2).

Police say the mother called emergency services after attacking the children. The woman identified herself as Saiqa Akhter and repeatedly tells the operator she killed her two children, describing how she first tried to poison them, then later strangled them.

She told the operator she initially tried to poison the children with bathroom cleaner but they refused to drink it. When that didn't work, "I used a wire on their necks," she said.

When the operator asked the woman why she attacked her children, she said: "They're both not normal, not normal. They're autistic. Both are autistic." Pressed further, she said: "I don't want my children to be like that. ... I want normal kids."