Pakistan

Two Pakistani officials go missing in Afghanistan

ISLAMABAD: Two Pakistani staffers at the Pakistan consulate in eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad were missing since June 16, said the Foreign Office on Sunday.

The incident came days after a visit by UN chief Antonio Guterres to war-torn Afghanistan.

Nafees Zakaria, the Foreign Office spokesperson, said the two diplomats, who set off for Pakistan on June 16, have gone missing in Afghanistan as there was no clue to their whereabouts since then. They were coming back home to celebrate Eidul Fitr with their loved ones, he added.

He said the Pakistani authorities have taken up the matter of their disappearance with Afghan authorities to ensure their swift and safe release, adding that the Afghan officials have also assured of their full-cooperation in that regard and have constituted three teams comprising security officials to trace the missing Pakistanis and bring those involved to book.

Zakaria said the Pakistani foreign officials are in constant touch with the relevant authorities and have requested them to take all-out efforts for their early and safe return.

The Taliban ruled Afghanistan from 1996 until they were toppled by a US-led invasion in 2001. They have battled the Kabul government and its foreign allies ever since.

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