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Director of Pakistan's largest media group kidnapped

Map of Pakistan locating Peshawar, capital city of Khyber Pakhtunkhuwa province, 2012
Map of Pakistan locating Peshawar, capital city of Khyber Pakhtunkhuwa province, 2012


Update: Director of country's largest media group set free by abductors. (30 September 2016)

This statement was originally published on on 29 September 2016.

Abid Abdullah, Director of Coordination for the Jang Group, was kidnapped at gunpoint by unidentified men at around 3 AM on 28 September 2016 from Peshawar, the capital city of Khyber Pakhtunkhuwa province.

Abdullah was kidnapped as he was returning to his hotel along with his driver Zafar Hussain, after visiting the printing press of the daily Jang in the Industrial Estate area of the city's Hayatabad area. Armed men in two vehicles intercepted the car and three persons got into Abdullah's car.

According to the statement given to police by Hussain, the armed men said they knew Abdullah and that he was close to Mir Shakilur Rehman, the proprietor of the Jang and Geo Group. Abdullah offered to give them money, if they were kidnapping him for ransom. The kidnappers said they were not after money.

The kidnappers also said they would make three prominent journalists of the media group – namely Shahzaib Khanzada, Hamid Mir and Najam Sathi – their "guests" soon.

Hussain was directed to drive to the hotel, but when they got close to the hotel, the armed men told the driver to park the car and wait inside with his head down. He was also warned not to look anywhere or they would shoot him. The kidnappers took Abdullah with them in their car and fled. They also took Abdullah and Hussain's mobile phones with them.

Abdullah had arrived from Lahore only a day earlier and was staying alone at a five-star hotel in Peshawar.

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