5 govt officials abducted from Sorange
QUETTA: Tribal militants have kidnapped five government officials in Sorange to demand an end to military operations in the area, officials said on Sunday. The kidnapping took place early on Sunday some 40 kilometres south of Quetta. Those abducted were identified as Mukhtar Ali Junejo, Abdul Majid, Tanveer Hussain, Kamran and Mohammad Abid.
The outlawed Baloch Liberation Army claimed responsibility, saying the kidnapping was in retaliation for fresh military operations against the Baloch population in the Kohlu district. “Five officials of Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation including its Project Director were abducted by armed persons from their residential colony,” provincial home secretary Zafarullah Baloch told AFP.
The officials have been taken to an unknown place and teams have been sent to search for them, Baloch said. Local government officials also confirmed the incident and quoting witnesses said more than two dozen armed insurgents on three vehicles came and surrounded the Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC) residential colony. The rebels captured the five officials at gunpoint and also took away two government vehicles, the officials said.
Baloch Liberation Army spokesman Meerak Baloch, speaking by satellite phone to newspaper offices in Quetta, claimed responsibility for the abduction. “The abduction of government officials is the reaction of newly launched military operation in Kohlu and Chamalung areas and all will be executed one by one if PMDC does not close down its operation in the area,” the spokesman said. Law enforcement personnel cordoned off the entire area and launched search operation to trace the abducted persons.