Kidnapped American: US mission chief seeks quick recovery

Munter meets with Khar and Bashir, conveys Washington’s concerns.

Express August 18, 2011
Kidnapped American: US mission chief seeks quick recovery


The United States urged Pakistani authorities on Wednesday to quickly recover its national Warren Weinstein who was kidnapped from his Lahore residence on Saturday.

The matter was raised by US Ambassador Cameron Munter, who held separate meetings with Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar and Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir.

Officials told The Express Tribune that Munter pressed Pakistani authorities to recover the American aid expert, who was abducted at gunpoint by unidentified persons.

The US embassy spokesperson confirmed the meeting but declined from sharing any details. The police have so far uncovered no clue into the kidnapping that saw Weinstein struck on the head with a pistol and driven off from his home.

There have been no claims of responsibility and the most officers have been able to establish is that he was targeted because of his nationality.

According to AFP, Weinstein travelled widely in the country, working on projects that focused on private-sector development and economic growth and visited only safe parts of the northwest, where the Taliban and al Qaeda-linked groups have bases.

One of his colleagues told AFP that his contract was expiring on August 15 and he was expected to leave Pakistan by the end of this month.

A statement issued by the foreign ministry did not touch upon the subject.

“The two sides discussed bilateral relations and underscored the importance of the Pakistan-US strategic relationship based on mutual respect and mutual interests,” it added after the meeting between Munter and Khar.

Both sides, it said, agreed to bolster cooperation between the two countries in various fields and also called for enhanced convergence on regional issues.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 18th, 2011.


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