Skip to content

US woman held hostage by Taliban to ‘promote Christianity’

US woman held hostage by Taliban to ‘promote Christianity’

An American individual has been captured and is currently being held hostage by the Taliban after the group attacked the facilities of a Swiss non-profit organization operating in Afghanistan.

The Taliban accused the organization of promoting Christianity.

The International Assistance Mission (IAM) on Friday verified that the US staff member and 18 others were detained by the extremist faction following their assault on the IAM facility in Ghor, located just 400 miles from Kabul.

“We do not know the circumstances that led to these incidents and we have not been informed of the reason for the detention of our staff,” the International Assistance Mission said in a statement. “The well-being and safety of our colleagues is paramount to us, and we are doing everything we can to ensure their safety and secure their speedy release.”

However, Taliban officials said the hostages were taken to “propagate and promote Christianity”.

The International Assistance Mission (IAM) on Friday verified that the US staff member and 18 others were detained by the extremist faction following their assault on the IAM facility in Ghor, located just 400 miles from Kabul.

The name of the American woman had not been released until Monday.

Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan two years ago, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have faced heightened risks. The Taliban imposed strict measures, including banning Afghan women from studying beyond the sixth grade and from participating in public life or employment, especially in the NGO field.

Initially, three individuals, including the US citizen, were arrested during the initial raid, with another 15 captured ten days later. His whereabouts are currently undisclosed, with him confined to Kabul, the same city that witnessed the tumultuous withdrawal of US forces in 2021 under the administration of President Joe Biden.

The US State Department acknowledged the detention of an American citizen by the Taliban, and reiterated its advice against US nationals traveling to Afghanistan due to the ongoing armed conflict, civil unrest, crime, terrorism and kidnapping threats.

“Travel to all areas of Afghanistan is unsafe and the risk of kidnapping or violence against US citizens in Afghanistan is high,” the State Department said. “We have no further details to share at this time.”

This non-profit organization has been active in Afghanistan for almost six decades, operating according to Christian principles with the aim of improving healthcare, education and community development.

On Monday, Iran released five American prisoners as part of a meticulously negotiated deal brokered by Qatar. This landmark agreement also included the unfreezing of approximately $6 billion in Iranian funds and the release of five Iranian prisoners held in the United States.

The negotiation had been ongoing for several years and is now widely regarded as a major diplomatic achievement between the two long-time adversaries.

An American citizen who was recently freed as part of a complex exchange deal after nearly eight years in prison in Iran is urging the Biden administration to embark on a “comprehensive effort that change the game” with the goal of ending the long-standing practice of the Islamic regime. holding foreigners as hostages.

Siamak Namazi, 51, was among five American citizens released Monday as part of a deal that involved granting clemency to five Iranians facing charges in the United States and providing Iran with access to 6,000 millions of dollars in previously frozen oil revenues.

“For the past 44 years, the Iranian regime has mastered the nasty game of ensnaring innocent Americans and other foreign nationals, and trading their freedom,” he said after flying from Tehran to Doha, adding that the prison d’Evin is a “dystopian United Nations nation”. Hostages”.

“We urgently need to channel the grave pain of the victims of this evil into the kind of measures that will overturn the cost-benefit calculations of Tehran’s evil business,” he continued. “Because if we maintain this vile path to risk-free, toll-free profit, this venal regime will continue to trample it. Again and again.”

“It is only if the free world finally agrees to collectively impose draconian consequences on those who use human lives as mere bargaining chips that the Iranian regime and its peers will be forced to make different choices,” he added. “Sadly, until then, we can anticipate that more Americans and others will fall victim to state hostage-taking.”

The release of those prisoners was praised by President Joe Biden, who quickly imposed new sanctions on Iran’s former hardline president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the country’s influential intelligence ministry because of the non- solved by Robert Levinson. Levinson, a retired FBI agent, disappeared after visiting an island off the southern coast of Iran in 2007.

In December, the Taliban released two Americans who had been detained in Afghanistan on Tuesday. One of those released was Ivor Shearer, an independent filmmaker who had been in custody since August. The name of the other American was withheld at the request of the family. Faizullah Faizbakhsh, an Afghan freelance journalist in Kabul who worked as a producer for Shearer, was released from a Taliban prison in January after nearly five months, the Afghanistan Center for Journalists said. Another journalist, Khaled Qaderi, was also released at the time.

Also in December, the Biden administration secured the release of WNBA player Brittney Griner for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, nicknamed the “Merchant of Death.”

Viktor Bout had been sentenced to 25 years in prison since 2012 after his conviction by a New York jury on charges related to conspiring to harm Americans and other crimes.

Meanwhile, Olympic gold medalist and WNBA Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner had been incarcerated in a Russian penal colony since February. His arrest stemmed from the discovery by Russian customs officials of two vaporizer cartridges and hashish oil in his luggage.

*” Indicates mandatory fields

This article contains comments that reflect the opinion of the author.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *