Freed UN official flown to US

April 5th, 2009 - 2:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, April 5 (IANS) UN official John Solecki, who was freed in Pakistan after more than two months of captivity, was sent to the US in a special army plane Sunday, an official said.
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) spokesman in Balochistan Dunya Aslam told Geo News that Solecki, who was released Saturday, was on his way back home.

His kidnappers said they had released Solecki, 49, chief of the UNHCR in Balochistan, on humanitarian grounds.

The UN official was kidnapped when he was on his way to his office in Quetta, the capital of southwestern Balochistan province. His driver was killed by the kidnappers.

A hitherto unknown group called Balochistan Liberation United Front (BLUF) claimed responsibility for the abduction.

BLUF had demanded the release of prisoners it said were being held by the government.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, speaking during a visit to France, thanked Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai and other people who had worked for Solecki’s release.

“I am very happy and at the same time I would like to share this moment with his family and his colleagues in the United Nations,” he said.

–Indo-Asian News Agency

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