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Saturday, Oct 19, 2019

Hostile groups may have abducted ISI man: Pakistan

Pakistani Foreign Office statement said Islamabad continues to make “all-out efforts to locate him and shall not rest until he is home”.

india Updated: Sep 19, 2019 03:40 IST
Imtiaz Ahmad
Imtiaz Ahmad
Islamabad
It was responding to reports claiming that Zahir is in Indian custody and speculation about his possible swap with  Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former naval officer currently on death row in Pakistan after being convicted of alleged involvement in espionage.
It was responding to reports claiming that Zahir is in Indian custody and speculation about his possible swap with Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former naval officer currently on death row in Pakistan after being convicted of alleged involvement in espionage.(HT FILE)
         

Pakistan on Wednesday said it does not rule out the involvement of “hostile agencies” in the disappearance of Lt Col Habib Zahir, a former officer of its spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence, in 2017.

A Pakistani Foreign Office statement said Islamabad continues to make “all-out efforts to locate him and shall not rest until he is home”.

It was responding to reports claiming that Zahir is in Indian custody and speculation about his possible swap with Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former naval officer currently on death row in Pakistan after being convicted of alleged involvement in espionage.

Zahir went missing in Nepal after he had gone there for a job interview in April 2017.

The statement quoted Zahir’s family saying he had posted his resume on social networking site LinkedIn and a UN website for a job.

“In response, he received a call and email from one Mr Mark stating that he had been shortlisted for the job of Vice President. He was asked to visit Kathmandu, Nepal, for which he was sent an air ticket for Lahore-Oman-Kathmandu by Oman Airlines for an interview on 6 April 2017,’’ the statement said.

It said after landing in Nepal, he sent a message to his wife telling her that he had landed safely at Lumbini, five kilometers from the Indian border. The statement added he lost contact with his family after that.

“In view of his disappearance from Lumbini, which is 5 kilometers from the Indian border and the involvement of Indian nationals...Pakistan also repeatedly requested the Government of India to assist in locating him. However, no positive response has been received from the Indian side.”

First Published: Sep 19, 2019 03:40 IST

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