The Australian government has officially called on the Afghan authorities to step up efforts and cooperate in finding an Australian woman who was kidnapped in the eastern Nangarhar province on Thursday.
On Friday, the Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop said that although the details of the report have yet to be confirmed, the government is closely monitoring the situation.
She called on the Afghan government to accelerate efforts and make sure they secure the safe release of the hostage.
The statement comes a day after a group of armed men wearing military uniforms stormed the DACAAR compound, a charity organization working for women empowerment in the country, and took the Australian woman with them.
The Australian woman has been associated with the organization for twenty years.
Meanwhile, the family of the hostage has appealed for the safe release of her.
While calls are growing for her release, local officials in Nangarhar have said that so far the Afghan security forces have arrested several individuals allegedly involved in the kidnapping of the Australian.
“The details of the report have to be confirmed by the Afghan authorities, but they certainly believe that she has been kidnapped. We are trying to confirm all of the details, but we are in communication with her family,” Bishop told reporters on Friday.
Bishop made it clear that the Australian government does not believe in paying ransom in exchange for a hostage’s release.
“The Australian government does not as a matter of policy pay ransom to kidnappers,” she said.
While the fate of the Australian hostage remains unclear, the woman’s father on Friday appealed for the safe release of his daughter.
“Foreign affairs ministry phoned me and told me and said they would keep in touch. They knew no more than I did all the news was that she was kidnapped … we don’t yet know what the demand would be. But I presume you don’t harm a hostage, because to did that is not good at all,” the father of the hostage, Brian Wilson said.
“Several individuals so far have been arrested in connection with the kidnapping, efforts are underway to the arrest the main masterminds,” Attaullah Khogyani, spokesman for Nangarhar governor said.
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