Taliban in Afghanistan take 30 Pakistani children hostage
Taliban militants in Afghanistan have taken hostage around 30 Pakistani children who crossed the border by mistake, Pakistani officials said on Friday.
The children from the tribal district of Bajaur were visiting Rakhi Park located on the border on the Eid al Fitr holiday on Thursday when they crossed into the Afghan province of Kunnar.
‘Terrorists on the other side of the border took the children as hostages,’ said Islam Zaif Khan, the top official in Bajaur district.
He did not explain whether the militants were of Afghan origin or Pakistani Taliban who have fled military operations and taken shelter in Afghanistan.
All 30 children were from the Mamoond tribe, which has formed a tribal militia to fight Taliban militants alongside the government forces.
The Mamoond tribe summoned a meeting to discuss ways of getting back the children.
Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rehman Malik contacted the Afghan government and requested it to take measures to secure the release of the children, Express Television reported.
Hundreds of militants have fled from Pakistan’s north-western region into Afghanistan following Pakistani security operations, particularly in the Bajaur and Swat districts in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province.