Afghanistan on Sunday said it was recalling its ambassador to Islamabad and other senior diplomats over “security threats” after the top envoy’s daughter was briefly kidnapped in the Pakistani capital.
While few details have been released about the incident, Afghanistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said Silsila Alikhil was abducted for several hours on Friday by unknown individuals and “severely tortured”.
“Following the abduction of the daughter of Afghan ambassador in Pakistan, the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan have recalled the Afghan envoy and other senior diplomats from Islamabad back to Kabul until all the security threats are removed,” the foreign ministry said in a statement Sunday, demanding the arrest and prosecution of the kidnappers.
Alikhil was on her way home in the Pakistani capital when she was kidnapped, the ministry had said Saturday, adding that she was under medical care in hospital after being released.
Later, Pakistan’s foreign ministry said that she had been assaulted in her car, adding the security of the ambassador and his family had been tightened.
Islamabad is a leafy, spacious city with relatively tight security and a population of around one million people.
“The abduction of Afghan ambassador’s daughter & her subsequent torture has wounded the psyche of our nation. Our national psyche has been tortured,” Afghanistan’s Vice President Amrullah Saleh said on Twitter.
An Afghan delegation will visit Pakistan to assess the situation after which “more steps will be taken,” Afghanistan’s foreign ministry added.
Relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan have long been strained.
Kabul accuses Islamabad of offering a safe haven to Taliban militants who are waging a major campaign across the Afghan countryside.
While Islamabad says Kabul turns a blind eye to militant groups launching attacks on Pakistan from its soil.
As fighting raged in Afghanistan, war of words heated up this week between the two neighbours, with Saleh accusing the Pakistani military of providing “close air support to Taliban in certain areas”.
Pakistan strongly denied the claim, with a foreign ministry statement saying the country “took necessary measures within its territory to safeguard our own troops and population”.
Tension between the two countries have further soared after the Taliban this week captured the Spin Boldak border crossing with Pakistan.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)