Pak Army recovers foreign family kidnapped in Afghanistan
Trump praises release of US-Canadian family, says ‘positive’ for US-Pakistan relations
ISLAMABAD/WASHINGTON: Pakistan Army on Thursday rescued five abducted foreign nationals in an intelligence-based operation (IBO), the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement.
According to Pakistan Army’s media wing, the hostages included a Canadian, his American wife, and their three children. They were kidnapped by terrorists from Afghanistan in 2012 and kept as hostages there.
The operation was conducted by the Pakistani troops after receiving intelligence from the US authorities, who had been tracking them and shared their shifting across to Pakistan on October 11 through the Kurram Agency border.
The recovered hostages are being repatriated to their country of origin.
The captives are not identified but are likely to be be Joshua Boyle and Caitlan Coleman, kidnapped in Afghanistan in 2012 while on a backpacking trip.
The last known footage of the couple surfaced in December last year when they appeared in video urging their governments to secure their release. They were pictured holding their two young sons, who had been born while they were in captivity.
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump announced that US and Pakistani officials had secured the release of a American woman, her Canadian husband and their three children from Taliban captivity.
The US leader identified the kidnapped couple as Caitlan Coleman and Joshua Boyle, and said their release was a “positive moment” for US relations with Pakistan.
“Ms Coleman gave birth to the couple’s three children while they were in captivity,” Trump said, in a White House statement. “Today, they are free.”
Trump said that the family had been held hostage by the Haqqani network, “a terrorist organization with ties to the Taliban.”
A still image from a video posted by the Taliban on social media on 19 December 2016 shows American Caitlan Coleman, left, speaking next to her Canadian husband Joshua Boyle and their two sons.