A North American couple kidnapped by the Afghan Taliban five years ago, and their three children born in captivity, have been freed in Pakistan.
The couple, Canadian Joshua Boyle and his American wife Caitlan Coleman, were kidnapped when they were backpacking in Afghanistan in October 2012, the BBC reported. Coleman was pregnant at the time.
They were rescued by the Pakistani Army on Thursday, after US intelligence agencies that were tracking the family in Afghanistan, said on October 11 that they were moving across the border into Pakistan, the BBC report said.
US President Donald Trump said the freeing of the family was “a positive moment” for US-Pakistan relations. “The Pakistani government’s cooperation is a sign that it is honouring America’s wishes for it to do more to provide security in the region,” Trump said in a statement.
The rescue comes 10 months after a video (pictured above) of Boyle, now 34, Coleman, 31, and their two children, pleading with their governments to negotiate with their captors, was released.
Joshua Boyle’s parents, Linda and Patrick, told the Toronto Star newspaper that they had spoken to their son by telephone after his release. The couple thanked Pakistani soldiers who had “risked their lives” to rescue the family.