Pak­istan res­cues Chi­nese tourist held hostage by the Tal­iban


A Chi­nese tourist held hostage for months by the Tal­iban has been freed in a gov­ern­ment op­er­a­tion, Pak­istani In­te­rior Min­is­ter Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said. Khan made the an­nounce­ment in a press con­fer­ence late Sun­day night that was broad­cast Mon­day on mul­ti­ple TV chan­nels. He said the man will be handed over to main­land- Chi­nese author­i­ties soon.

“Our in­tel­li­gence agen­cies are proud of res­cu­ing the cap­tive,” he said. “Chi­nese author­i­ties, when­ever we meet, would al­ways ask about the cap­tive. Thank God, now, we have him.”

There was no im­me­di­ate com­ment from the main­land Chi­nese rep­re­sen­ta­tive of­fice in Is­lam­abad on the res­cue op­er­a­tion. Khan did not iden- tify the Chi­nese na­tional and did not pro­vide de­tails on the res­cue.

The only Chi­nese na­tional known to be held by the Tal­iban is Hong Xudong, who was ab­ducted in May 2014 near the north­west­ern Pak­istani city of Dera Is­mail Khan. Hong had en­tered the coun­try from In­dia and had been trav­el­ing around Pak­istan by bi­cy­cle.

The kid­nap­ping was claimed by a splin­ter group of the Pak­istani Tal­iban. A video re­leased in May 2015 showed a man iden­ti­fied as Hong ask­ing the Chi­nese gov­ern­ment to honor his kid­nap­pers’ un­spec­i­fied ran­som de­mands.

The Pak­istani Tal­iban is an um­brella group of var­i­ous lo­cal Is­lamic mil­i­tant groups bent upon over­throw­ing the gov­ern­ment to in­stall their own harsh brand of Is­lamic law.

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