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Abducted Afghan diplomat freed in Pak

A senior Afghan diplomat in Pakistan, kidnapped two years ago by gunmen, has been freed, the Afghan government said on Sunday.

world Updated: Nov 14, 2010 14:48 IST

A senior Afghan diplomat in Pakistan, kidnapped two years ago by gunmen, has been freed, the Afghan government said on Sunday.

Abdul Khaliq Farahi, the Afghan consul general in Pakistan, was seized after gunmen ambushed his car and killed his driver in September 2008 in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar.

"I can confirm that he was freed yesterday and he is in Afghanistan," said Siyamak Herawi, a spokesman for President Hamid Karzai.

"The government of Pakistan has apparently said that he was freed in an operation," he replied when asked whether any deal had been struck to secure Farahi's release.

Pakistani officials, however, denied any operation had been undertaken.

"What we know is it was not the outcome of any operation," a senior government official, who declined to be identified, said.

At the time of his abduction, Farahi was Kabul's nominee to become ambassador to Pakistan.

His kidnappers, believed to have links to Taliban militants, had issued a series of demands, including release of some militants prisoners apparently held by Pakistan's government for Farahi's freedom at the time.

But it has never been made public who the abductors were or what they demanded.