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Daring Hostage Rescue In Eastern Afghanistan  
User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13220 posts, RR: 77
Posted (2 years 4 months 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 930 times:

12 days ago, four aid workers, one British, one Kenyan and two Afghans, were taken hostage by a group, whose demands included a £7 million ransom. A criminal, albeit with close links to insurgents, gang who were heavily armed, seized them in a mountainous, difficult to access and generally treacherous area of terrain. In the same area a group of aid workers, also there to alleviate malnutrition, were murdered in 2010.

Last night, a rescue operation by NATO, headed by UK Special Forces with US support, freed the hostages, all of whom were unharmed, killing the five kidnappers during the rescue.
This after increasing threats to the lives of the hostages and fears of greater Taliban involvement.

Some recent attempts to rescue hostages have not gone well, in Afghanistan and Nigeria, so it's a relief that this one was a total success, hopefully a deterrent too.

Officially confirmed by the PM;

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-18306346

5 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineimiakhtar From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (2 years 4 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 915 times:

Quoting GDB (Thread starter):
mountainous, difficult to access and generally treacherous area of terrain.

I've seen the Wakhan Corridor from afar pre 2001. The region and the peoples that inhabit them are beautiful.

A well done to the special forces. Like you said, the last one to involve a British hostage didn't end too well.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 2, posted (2 years 4 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 908 times:

Only got as far as Herat way back in 1975. That is one of the nicer areas of Afghanistan, to my knowledge. Despite that, it looked pretty rugged to me.

Quoting imiakhtar (Reply 1):
The region and the peoples that inhabit them are beautiful.

Certainly the people that inhabited what I saw were very nice to me. But it was rather like going through a time portal crossing from Iran.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineimiakhtar From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (2 years 4 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 888 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 2):
Certainly the people that inhabited what I saw were very nice to me. But it was rather like going through a time portal crossing from Iran.

Apologies. I wasn't referring to the dominant pashtuns, but the Wakhan people of the extreme North-East. Suffice it to say, culturally they're very different!

The terrain too is immense and strange. The Pamirs of Tajikistan to the North, a fertile strip of grassland in between only a few miles across, and the Hindu Kush and Karakoram of Pakistan and China to the South and East.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 4, posted (2 years 4 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 879 times:

Quoting imiakhtar (Reply 3):
Apologies. I wasn't referring to the dominant pashtuns, but the Wakhan people of the extreme North-East. Suffice it to say, culturally they're very different!

Apologies not necessary. I am quite aware that Afghanistan is not a nation in the normal sense, but rather an assortment of very distinct tribes, each more or less with a defined turf. That's one of the main roots of the current "problem".

Backpacking through that whole region (Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Syria) at 24 was an eye-opener.

Cheers,



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13220 posts, RR: 77
Reply 5, posted (2 years 4 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 866 times:

Rory Stewart, now an MP, walked across Afghanistan. Impressive, Even more so, he did this in late 2001. Long after the hippy trail era had ended.
(He did a two part doc recently for the BBC about the history of foreign intervention in this land, if you can get to see it on a certain video sharing site, well worth a look).


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