Monday October 03, 2022

No proof Afghan envoy’s daughter kidnapped, says Rashid

July 21, 2021

ISLAMABAD: An investigation into the alleged kidnapping of the Afghan ambassador’s daughter has found no evidence of an abduction, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid said on Tuesday, as relations between the two countries become increasingly strained.

The Afghan foreign ministry alleged on Saturday that Silsila Alikhil was riding in a taxi in Islamabad when she was kidnapped and held for several hours, during which she was “severely tortured by unknown persons”.

Pakistan’s foreign ministry put out a statement at the time saying she had been assaulted, adding that security for ambassador Najibullah Alikhil and his family had been tightened. But on Tuesday Pakistan authorities cast doubt on the story.

“There is no case of kidnapping,” Pakistan’s interior minister Sheikh Rashid told reporters at a press conference, adding that investigators had watched 700 hours of CCTV footage and searched 200 taxis.

He said the incident was being used as a way to “defame our country”. “Pakistan will not back down from this case, even though there is a huge difference between her (claim) and our findings,” he added, inviting Silsila Alikhil to help with the investigation.

The Afghan ambassador was recalled to Kabul on Sunday over “security threats”, a move Islamabad said was regrettable.