Thursday, 19 October 2017

Trump praises Pakistan’s cooperation in release of US-Canadian family from Taliban

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WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump announced Thursday that US and Pakistani officials had secured the release of a American woman, her Canadian husband and their three children from Taliban captivity. He praised the Pakistani government and armed forces for the cooperation to rescue the family in an operation.

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.”

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President Donald Trump thanked Pakistan for its role in recovering the hostages. “The Pakistani government’s cooperation is a sign that it is honoring America’s wish that it do more to provide security in the region,” Trump said.

“I want to thank Pakistan. They worked very hard on this and I believe they are starting to respect the United States again,” Trump added.

“This is a positive moment for our country s relationship with Pakistan. The Pakistani government s cooperation is a sign that it is honoring America s wishes for it to do more to provide security in the region. We hope to see this type of cooperation and teamwork in helping secure the release of remaining hostages and in our future joint counterterrorism operations,” said statement from White House.

Earlier, the Pakistani military had said that the hostages had been rescued in the Kurram district of the semi-autonomous tribal belt on Pakistan’s Afghan border.

Boyle and Coleman were kidnapped by the Afghan Taliban during a 2012 backpacking trip to war-torn Afghanistan, and they appeared in a hostage video in December last year pleading for their release.

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“This is a positive moment for our country s relationship with Pakistan. The Pakistani government s cooperation is a sign that it is honoring America s wishes for it to do more to provide security in the region,” Trump said.

“We hope to see this type of cooperation and teamwork in helping secure the release of remaining hostages and in our future joint counterterrorism operations.”

On the other hand, US Defence Minister Rex Tillerson also thanked Pakistan for their efforts and cooperation with US government to rescue the family. US ambassador and his team made it possible to recover the US family, he added.

He said the US administration is thankful to Pakistani government and army, and such cooperation will continue.

Pakistan Army statement

Pakistan Army

In 2012, Caitlan Coleman, an American citizen, and her husband, Joshua Boyle, a Canadian citizen, were taken captive and held hostage by the Haqqani network, a terrorist organization with ties to the Taliban.

Ms. Coleman gave birth to the couple’s three children while they were in captivity. Yesterday, the United States government, working in conjunction with the Government of Pakistan, secured the release of the Boyle-Coleman family from captivity in Pakistan.

Today they are free. This is a positive moment for our country’s relationship with Pakistan. The Pakistani government’s cooperation is a sign that it is honoring America’s wishes for it to do more to provide security in the region. We hope to see this type of cooperation and teamwork in helping secure the release of remaining hostages and in our future joint counterterrorism operations.

The Pakistani military said early Thursday the family was “being repatriated to the country of their origin.” But as of Thursday evening, it was not known when they would return to North America. They were together in a safe, undisclosed location in Pakistan, according to a U.S. national security official, who wasn’t authorized to discuss the case publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Pakistani military said the family had been freed in “an intelligence-based operation by Pakistan troops” after they’d crossed the border from Afghanistan.

White House statement

 In 2012, Caitlan Coleman, an American citizen, and her husband, Joshua Boyle, a Canadian citizen, were taken captive and held hostage by the Haqqani network, a terrorist organization with ties to the Taliban.

Ms. Coleman gave birth to the couple’s three children while they were in captivity. Yesterday, the United States government, working in conjunction with the Government of Pakistan, secured the release of the Boyle-Coleman family from captivity in Pakistan.

Today they are free. This is a positive moment for our country’s relationship with Pakistan. The Pakistani government’s cooperation is a sign that it is honoring America’s wishes for it to do more to provide security in the region. We hope to see this type of cooperation and teamwork in helping secure the release of remaining hostages and in our future joint counterterrorism operations.

Pak Army performed well in recovering the couple: Jim Mattis

Jim Mattis

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Thursday he was hopeful that the freeing of a kidnapped U.S.-Canadian couple and their three children in Pakistan was a harbinger for closer cooperation in the future.

“This is a very positive moment and the Pakistan Army performed well,” Mattis told reporters on board a military plane, adding he hoped this would be “a harbinger for the future.”

“We intend to work with Pakistan in a collaborative way in the future to stop terrorism and that includes kidnapping,” Mattis added. He declined to comment on any specifics on how the hostages were freed.

Senior US military official General Joseph Votel also termed the freeing of the kidnapped US-Canadian couple and their children in Pakistan a positive sign and a recognition of how seriously Islamabad takes the protection of American citizens.

“We are very appreciative for the efforts of the Pakistani military in helping effect the securing of our American hostages that have been held there, and a Canadian citizen, for quite some time,” said General Votel.

Parents of rescued Canadian-American family thank Pakistan Army

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The parents of the Canadian citizen Joshua Boyle expressed their ‘profound’ thanks to the Pakistani Army for rescuing their son, his American wife and their three children in an operation conducted by the Pakistani forces based on intelligence provided by the United States.

In a video statement, Patrick and Linda Boyle expressed their gratefulness to Pakistani, American, Afghan and Canadian governments.

“We relate to the High Commissioner of Pakistan here in Canada our profound thanks for the courageous Pakistani soldiers who risked their lives and got all five out safely in the rescue [operation],” said Patrick.

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