Pakistan army frees North American family kidnapped by Afghan Taliban

Pakistan Forward


A still from a video released by militants last year, picturing Caitlan Coleman, Joshua Boyle and their son. [-- / SITE INTELLIGENCE GROUP / AFP]

RAWALPINDI -- The Pakistan army has successfully freed a kidnapped family that had been held for almost five years, the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) said Thursday (October 12).

"The rescued family, including a Canadian, his American wife and their three children, were abducted by terrorists in Afghanistan in 2012 and were being shifted to Pakistan when Pakistani troops recovered them safe and sound," the ISPR said.

Caitlan Coleman and Joshua Boyle were kidnapped by the Taliban while backpacking in Afghanistan, and they appeared in a hostage video in December last year pleading for their release. They were pictured holding their two young sons, who had been born while they were in captivity.

The Haqqani Network has been accused of masterminding several high-profile terrorist attacks in the Afghan capital and have been known to kidnap Western hostages and smuggle them across the border into Pakistan.

The intelligence based operation in Kurram Agency was carried out Wednesday (October 11) with information shared by US intelligence agencies, said the ISPR.

The rescued family will be repatriated soon, the ISPR said.

The success underscores the importance of timely intelligence sharing and Pakistan's continued commitment towards fighting a common enemy, according to the ISPR.

[Abdul Nasir Khan contributed to this report from Lahore.]

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