The Government and people of Pakistan express deep appreciation to the brotherly people and government of Nigeria for helping to secure safe release of Pakistani citizen, Dr. Abuzar Muhammad Afzal, kidnapped and held in captivity for over 3 months.

Dr. Abuzar was among scores of passengers taken hostage in an attack on Abuja-Kaduna train on 28 March 2022. He is the only foreigner among 7 hostages freed last night, and 13 others released a month ago.

In a video message from Kaduna City this morning following his release, Dr. Abuzar thanked the governments of Pakistan and Nigeria, the negotiator and his employer, and everyone who contributed to the efforts for his freedom. He also thanked the Prime Minister of Pakistan, the Foreign Minister, and the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs for consistent endeavours to ensure his well-being and safe release.

We appreciate the political and military leadership of Nigeria, as well as the coordination between the two Ministries of Foreign Affairs and the High Commissions culminating in the release of Dr.Abuzar.

Dr. Abuzar has already reached Abuja and provided with Emergency Travel Document by the Pakistan High Commission to facilitate his journey to Pakistan later tonight, to be reunited with his family and loved ones in Multan coinciding with the happy occasion of Eid-ul-Adha.

10 July 2022

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