Afghanistan concerned over safety of its kidnapped envoy

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Islamabad, Oct 20 (UNI) A visiting high-level Afghanistan delegation has expressed concern over the safety and whereabouts of the Afghan Ambassador-designate to Islamabad Abdul Khaliq Farahi, kidnapped from Peshawar on September 22.

Talking to journalists in Peshawar yesterday evening, head of the Afghanistan delegation Sultan Ahmed Baheen claimed that the Pakistan government was not taking practical steps for the recovery of the kidnapped envoy but was only extending assurances.

'' We met politicians, members of Parliament and government officials during our visit to Pakistan but all of them gave us assurances all the time,'' he said adding that they needed practical steps in this regard.

Unknown people had kidnapped Abdul Khaliq Farahi, who worked as the Consul General at the Afghan Consulate in Peshawar for over five years, at gunpoint from the posh Hayatabad locality of this Pakistan city on September 22. His driver Khalid was killed by the armed assailants.

Sultan Ahmad Baheen, who is also the official spokesperson for Afghan Foreign Ministry, said his government and people were very much concerned about the safety and whereabouts of Farahi.

He added that Afghan Foreign Rangeen Dadfar Spanta would raise the issue with the Pakistan government during his scheduled visit to Pakistan on October 22.

''The Afghanistan government is happy with the present Pakistan government's measures for fighting terrorism and during his visit Spanta would discuss and carve out a joint strategy for tackling terrorism,'' he said.

The Afghan diplomat said they did not know who was behind the kidnapping but the kidnappers must know that Farahi was a noble person, a practising Muslim and a true Mujahid.

''The captors should release the Afghan Ambassador at the earliest,'' he said.

''We don't know anything about our kidnapped envoy as they (Pakistan government officials) have not shared with us any information on the issue. However, we are satisfied with the present government's stance and action against terrorism in the region,'' he added.

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