An American family who had been held captive in Afghanistan by the Taliban-connected Haqqani network since 2012 have been freed after a “negotiated release,” according to Fox News.
Caitlan Coleman, her Canadian husband Josh Boyle and their three children are reportedly in Pakistan, where the logistics of their trip home are still being worked out.
President Donald Trump said he was proud of his administration for getting the family released.
“Something happened today, where a country that totally disrespected us called with some very, very important news,” Trump said Wednesday.
Trump credited the release of the captive family to a newfound respect between Pakistan and the United Sates.
“And one of my generals came in. They said, ‘You know, I have to tell you, a year ago they would’ve never done that.’ It was a great sign of respect. You’ll probably be hearing about it over the next few days,” Trump said.
“But this is a country that did not respect us. This is a country that respects us now. The world is starting to respect us again, believe me,” he added, according to NPR.
U.S. intelligence agencies had been tracking the hostages and notified the Pakistan military that the hostages had been moved from Afghanistan into Pakistan.
As such, the Pakistan military released a statement indicating that they had carried a successful mission to rescue the family.
“The operation by Pakistani forces, based on actionable intelligence from U.S. authorities was successful,” the Pakistan statement said. “All hostages were recovered safe and sound and are being repatriated to the country of their origin.”
Fox News reported the U.S. did not pay for the hostages to be released or agree to any deals.
Last December, the family appeared in a YouTube video pleading for the U.S. and Canadian governments to help get them released from captivity.
“Please don’t become the next Jimmy Carter,” Coleman said in his prepared statement, begging former President Barack Obama to take action.
“Just give the offenders something so they and you can save face so we can leave the region permanently.”
The event comes just one month after Trump announced a new strategy with Afghanistan and Pakistan, where the two nations agreed to work more closely with the U.S. to defeat terrorism.
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