Conflict & Justice

Foreign aid workers kidnapped in Pakistan


A Pakistani soldier stands guard during the religious procession in Karachi on Sunday. A blast hit a Shiite Muslim religious procession killing as many as 17 and wounding dozens in central Pakistan.



Two foreign aid workers have been kidnapped in the Punjab Province in central Pakistan, The New York Times reported.

One of the two kidnapped workers is believed to be Italian, according to the Italian foreign agency who has been in contact with the person’s family, the BBC reported. The other kidnapped worker is believed to be German. The two work for Welthungerhilfe, an international aid group based in Bonn, Germany, which provides aid in regions affected by the floods of 2010, The Times reported. Nearly 20 million people were affected by the floods in Pakistan.

It is still unclear why they were kidnapped and if it was by a militant group or for ransom, the BBC reported. The abduction occurred in Multan by three armed men.

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"Three armed men entered the house and kidnapped two foreign nationals," Multan City Police Officer Amir Zulfiqar said outside of the house where the men were kidnapped, Reuters reported. "So far we have not established a motive but it is too early to say. We are continuing investigations to try to see what happened."

It is believed they were abducted from their own home in the outskirts of Multan, which they had just returned to after helping flood victims, CNN reported. The home is inside a closed off military community, which houses mostly military officers and some civilians.

According to Police Officer Muhammad Iqbal the two aid workers hadn’t notified authorities that they were working and living in the cantonment, which is required by Pakistan law, CNN reported.

Pakistani officials have acknowledged that most kidnappings are used by Taliban militants to generate money for terrorist operations, The Times reported. Earlier this month a British aid worker was kidnapped in Quetta, the BBC reported.

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