Pakistani PM orders early release of Chinese tourist

Updated: 2015-05-20 21:00


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ISLAMABAD - Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday afternoon took notice of the kidnapping of a Chinese tourist from the country's northwestern district of Dera Ismail Khan, local media reported.

Sharif issued directives to the Interior Ministry and other concerned authorities to make a quick coordination between the security departments for early the release of the abducted tourist.

Earlier on Tuesday, local media Dawn News reported that a Chinese tourist had been kidnapped by unknown militants in Pakistan's northwest Dera Ismail Khan district on Monday afternoon.

Dawn quoted police official Sadiq Baloch as saying that the abducted tourist was on his way from eastern Lahore city to southwestern Quetta city when he went missing in Darban area of Dera Ismail Khan, a district located in northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

According to the report, the tourist named Hong Xudong entered Pakistan in April from India. He was traveling on his bicycle and heading for the country's southwestern restive region of Balochistan, usually prohibited for foreigners traveling without security.

Police found Hong's passport, bicycle and other belongings from the area and launched a search operation in the region.

According to police, Hong was kidnapped at about 2:30 pm ( local time) on Monday but there has been no report of progress in his search so far.

Earlier on Tuesday afternoon, the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for kidnapping a Chinese tourist from the northwestern region of the country, local media reported.

According to the reports, a commander of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan in South Waziristan, Abdullah Bahar, told media that they abducted the Chinese tourist and shifted him to some safe hideout.

Bahar said they kidnapped the tourist for future negotiations with the Pakistani government for the release of their arrested members.

The Chinese embassy in Pakistan is currently seeking verification from the Pakistani side and working with it on the issue.