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Daughter of Afghan envoy to Pakistan briefly abducted, ‘tortured’: Kabul

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The file photo shows members of Pakistani police.

Afghanistan’s authorities say the daughter of the ambassador to Pakistan was briefly kidnapped and “severely tortured” in the Pakistani capital.

According to a statement by the Afghan Foreign Ministry on Saturday, Silsila Alikhail, the daughter of Ambassador Najibullah Alikhail, was kidnapped and tortured by unidentified men on her way home in Islamabad on Friday.

Silsila was seized for several hours and “severely tortured.”

No further detail of the abduction was available.

“After being released from the kidnappers’ captivity, Ms. Alikhil is under medical care at the hospital,” the statement added, urging an investigation into the incident.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs calls on the Government of Pakistan to take the necessary and immediate action to ensure the full security of the Afghan Embassy and Consulate and the immunity of the country's diplomats and their families in accordance with international treaties and commitments.”

The Afghan Foreign Ministry also said it had summoned Pakistan’s Ambassador to Kabul Mansour Ahmad Khan to lodge a formal complaint.

Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry, meanwhile, said the Afghan Embassy in Islamabad had informed it that Silsila had been assaulted while riding in a rented vehicle.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and relevant security authorities are closely in contact with the ambassador and his family and extending full support in the matter,” said Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri, a spokesman for Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry.

He added that police were investigating the “disturbing incident” and security had been tightened for the ambassador and his family.

Pakistan’s Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed also assured that Prime Minister Imran Khan wanted the matter to be treated as a top priority and the culprits behind the incident caught within 48 hours.

Pakistan and Afghanistan have long had frosty ties.

Afghanistan blames elements inside the Pakistani spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) for supporting the Taliban militants and allowing safe havens for them, while Pakistan blames Kabul for giving refuge to militants on its side of the border. The two sides also accuse each other of not doing enough to stop the militants from engaging in cross-border raids.

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