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Police tape marks a crime scene in this file photo.JOHN LEHMANN

Two men are dead and several suspects have been arrested in what Mounties are describing as a double homicide in British Columbia's Interior.

RCMP Cpl. Dave Tyreman said police were called to a rural residence just before midnight Friday in the small community of Anahim Lake, which is a drive of about 863 kilometres north of Vancouver.

Once on the scene, police found the dead men who were 22 and 23 years old.

"This is an extremely tragic incident," Tyreman said. "It just hits home even that much more close to Christmas and our hearts go out to the families involved in this incident."

Tyreman said police called in additional officers from Bella Coola and Alexis Creek, as well as the major crime unit and an emergency response team.

He said police arrested several suspects without incident at about 9 a.m. Saturday, and authorities believe the individuals knew each other.

Deana Wood, owner of Anahim Lake Trading, said she knew the victims, especially the 23-year-old who grew up locally and was a "good kid."

"The 23-year-old victim, local boy, grew up here, actually stopped in the store yesterday, did some shopping," she said.

She said she earned about the homicide because her daughter was called early in the morning to open up the store so the police could get gas.

"Everybody knows everybody," she said.

Tyreman said the investigation is in its early stages.

A provincial government travel website notes the small community, located west of Williams Lake and east of Bella Coola, is home to about 360 people, although Wood said about 1,000 people, including First Nations, live in the area.