Careful planning, rope helped NYT reporter escape Taliban captivityJune 22nd, 2009 - 5:08 pm ICT by ANI
New York, June 22 (ANI): An Afghan journalist who was held captive by the Taliban for more than seven months along with a New York Times reporter has revealed details of their night time escape.
Afghan journalist Tahir Ludin said that the escape plan included weeks of careful plotting, taking advantage of weary guards and dropping down a 20-foot wall with a rope.
NYT reporter David Rohde, along with Ludin and their driver, Asadullah Mangal, was abducted outside Kabul, Afghanistan, on November 10, 2008 while he was researching on a book.
Ludin said in an interview, that the escape on early Saturday from the second floor of a Taliban compound in North Waziristan, in Pakistan’s tribal areas, was a desperate attempt by two severely demoralized reporters, who believed that the Taliban were not seriously negotiating and would hold them indefinitely.
On Friday evening, in a planned bid to keep their captors awake as late as possible to ensure that the men would eventually sleep soundly, Ludin challenged the militants who slept beside them in the same room to a local board game, the New York Times reported.
When at last the games ended at midnight, the journalists waited for the militants to fall asleep.
At 1 a.m., Rohde woke Ludin and sneaked out of the room. Ludin recited several verses of the Koran and followed him. They made their way to the second floor, and Ludin got to the top of a five-foot-high wall.
Rohde handed Ludin a rope that he had found two weeks earlier and had hidden from the guards. They fastened the rope to the wall, and Ludin lowered himself along the rope before unclenching his fists for good.
He crashed to the ground, leaving him with a sprained right foot and other injuries. He cut his foot, he said, pointing to his swollen and heavily bruised ankle and his bandaged big toe.
Rohde then lowered himself along the wall and jumped down without injury, Ludin said. (ANI)
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