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Pakistan detains suspects over kidnapped American UN official

world Updated: Feb 03, 2009 10:53 IST
AFP
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Pakistani police have detained several suspects in a bid to track down the whereabouts of an American UN employee kidnapped in the restive Baluchistan region, a security official said on Tuesday.

John Solecki, head of the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) in the southwestern city of Quetta, was abducted by unidentified gunmen who killed his driver and took him away to an unknown location, said police and UN officials.

"We have picked up several suspects in connection with the probe. These people are detained for questioning, although we still have no direct lead on the kidnapped official," a senior security official told AFP.

"So far there has been no claim of responsibility. We have intensified police patrolling. Security has been intensified along the Afghan border to ensure the official has not slipped through the border into Afghanistan.

"It is still not clear whether the kidnapping is the work of a criminal gang or Taliban insurgents," added the official, who is involved in the investigation but requested anonymity because he was not authorised to speak.

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