Taliban deny role in US reporter's kidnapping -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Taliban deny role in US reporter’s kidnapping

KANDAHAR: Afghani Taliban on Sunday denied any involvement in the kidnapping of a New York Times reporter who escaped on Friday after seven months in captivity.

David Rohde and a local reporter, who were abducted outside of Kabul along with their driver, “just walked over the wall of the compound” where they were being held captive in North Waziristan Agency, Rohde’s wife Kristen Mulvihill told the Times after speaking with her husband.

The Taliban said the group was not involved in the abduction.

“Even at that time when they were kidnapped we had not claimed their kidnapping,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed told AFP by phone from an undisclosed location. “And now… we are not aware of how they were freed or escaped. We’re not involved at all and we do not know who had kidnapped them,” Mujahed said.

Rohde and his Afghan colleague Tahir Ludin made their daring escape Friday night and managed to find a Pakistani army scout who escorted them to a nearby army base. They were flown to the US air base in Bagram, Afghanistan, the New York Times said. Their driver did not escape with them. Rohde, 41, was said to be in good health, while Ludin injured his foot in the escape, according to the Times. Although occasional reports of the abduction had found their way onto the Internet, the Times and other media had kept the kidnapping quiet out of a concern for the men’s safety, it said.

Source: Daily Times

Date:6/22/2009