Islamic tribal elders had two young lovers whipped for eloping in violation of an ancient tradition that dictates arranged marriages, a newspaper reported Thursday.

By eloping with his bride-to-be, the lovesick suitor committed a crime in Northwest Frontier Province, where young women are hidden behind a veil and men risk death for "indiscretion."In its report, the Frontier Post newspaper reported that tribal elders snatched the couple who had eloped from their home in the Khyber Pass and put them on trial for flouting tradition. Both were found guilty.

About 15,000 people watched as tribal leaders had the young man whipped 15 times, the report said. His wife received a similar sentence carried out in private.

The newspaper said the two were allowed to remain together but were fined $2,200.

Public flogging is a traditional Pakistani punishment for crimes ranging from kidnapping to drug abuse.