Caitlan Coleman and Family Released by Taliban in Pakistan

Canadian Joshua Boyle left and U.S. citizen Caitlan Coleman were kidnapped in Afghanistan in 2012
Caitlan Coleman and Family Released by Taliban in Pakistan
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17 October, 2017

President Donald Trump addressed the joint rescue made by possible by the USA and Pakistan in a press conference Thursday. He also condemned his kidnappers for engaging in the brutal rape of his wife.

He called on the Afghan government to bring their captors to justice, saying, "God willing, this litany of stupidity will be the epitaph of the Haqqani network".

The operation was carried out by Pakistani intelligence operatives - reportedly from the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), which has always been a source of mounting frustration and annoyance in the U.S. - with the army providing perimeter protection, unidentified Pakistani officials told CNN, which also cited them as saying a gunfight broke out with the captors and an unspecified number of them were killed.

Canadian Joshua Boyle, his American wife Caitlan Coleman and their children are on their way home after five years held hostage by the Haqqani network.

"Canada has been actively engaged on Mr. Boyle's case at all levels, and we will continue to support him and his family now that they have returned".

It remains unknown why the family refused to immediately leave by way of USA -supplied transportation, even to Coleman's father.

The youngest child is understood to be in poor health.

Tariq Azim Khan said Thursday that Boyle and his family were then flown by helicopter to the US embassy in Islamabad where they remain.

The Pakistani military said the rescue operation was carried out by the ISI with the army's support on the basis of actionable intelligence provided by the U.S., which had been tracking the victims. He adds the family is fit to travel, but it's undecided whether they will fly to Canada or to the US from there.

"What I can say is taking your pregnant wife to a very unsafe place is to me and the kind of person I am, is unconscionable", Jim Coleman told ABC News on Wednesday.

Boyle gave The Associated Press a handwritten statement expressing disagreement with US foreign policy.

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On October 12, President Donald Trump, who previously warned Pakistan to stop harboring militants, praised Islamabad for acting on the US intelligence tip and showing its willingness to "do more to provide security in the region". The Americans consider it a terrorist organization and have targeted its leaders with drone strikes.

But the group also operates like a criminal network.

The rescue operation appeared to have unfolded quickly and ended with what some described as a unsafe raid, a shootout and a captor's final, terrifying threat to "kill the hostage". Unlike the Islamic State group, it does not typically execute Western hostages, preferring to ransom them for cash. USA officials did not confirm the details.

Boyle's father said his son did not want to board the plane because it was headed to Bagram Air Base and that the family wanted to return directly to North America.

U.S. officials had earlier told reporters, on the condition of anonymity, that Mr Boyle refused to board a USA military aircraft in Pakistan.

Boyle was once married to Zaynab Khadr, the older sister of former Guantanamo Bay detainee Omar Khadr and the daughter of a late senior al-Qaida financier.

"They were being shifted to a safer place when captured by the Pakistani forces", the official added.

The Canadian-born Omar Khadr was 15 when he was captured by US troops following a firefight and was taken to the USA detention center at Guantanamo Bay.

Officials had discounted any link between that background and Mr Boyle's capture, with one official describing it in 2014 as a "horrible coincidence".

The U.S. Justice Department said neither Boyle nor Coleman is wanted for any federal crime.


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