UNHCR: Release kidnapped Pakistan official
The UN refugee agency on Tuesday appealed for the release of an official kidnapped in Pakistan, John Solecki, on the 50th day of his captivity.
"The last we heard, John's health was deteriorating and we are increasingly worried about his medical condition," Ron Redmond, a spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), told journalists.
"As we mark this international day of solidarity (March 25) with missing staff members, we again appeal to those holding John to release him immediately so he and all his colleagues can continue to carry out their vital humanitarian work," he added.
Solecki, the local head of the agency, was seized at gunpoint in Quetta, the capital of southwestern province of Baluchistan, on February 2. His driver, Syed Hashim, was killed during the abduction.
An organisation claiming to hold Solecki, the Baluchistan Liberation United Front (BLUF), threatened last week to kill him if the government did not free more than 1,100 prisoners.
Redmond stressed that Solecki, a US citizen, had committed his life to helping uprooted people.
Pakistan said on Friday that it would soon secure the safe release of the UNHCR staffer.
Nineteen United Nations staff members are currently under arrest, missing or detained around the world, including Solecki.
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|Publication:||AFP South Asian Edition|
|Date:||Mar 24, 2009|
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