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Pakistani Taliban says responsible for kidnapping Chinese tourist

2014-05-20 18:00 Xinhua Web Editor: Mo Hong'e

The Pakistani Taliban on Tuesday afternoon claimed responsibility for kidnapping a Chinese tourist from the northwestern region of the country, local media reported.

According to the reports, a commander of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan in South Waziristan, Abdullah Bahar, told media that they kidnapped the Chinese tourist and shifted him to some safe hideout.

Bahar said they kidnapped the tourist from Dera Ismail Khan district for future negotiations with the Pakistani government for the release of their arrested members.

Earlier on Tuesday, local media Dawn News said on its website that a Chinese tourist had been kidnapped by unknown militants in Pakistan's northwest Dera Ismail Khan district on Monday afternoon.

Dawn quoting police officials said that the abducted tourist was on his way from eastern Lahore city to southwestern Quetta city when he went missing in Darban area of Dera Ismail Khan, a district located in northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

The tourist, named Hong Xudong, was traveling in Pakistan on his bicycle and was heading for the country's southwestern restive region of Balochistan, usually prohibited for foreigners traveling without security.

Police found Hong's bicycle and other belongings from the area and launched a search operation in the region.

According to police, Hong was kidnapped at about 2:30 p.m. ( local time) on Monday but there has been no report of progress in his search so far.

Following the incident, Chief Minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province Pervez Khattak ordered the police to utilize all resources to ensure an early recovery of the tourist, local media reported.

The reported kidnapping of the Chinese tourist has not been confirmed by the Chinese embassy in Pakistan.

An official of the Chinese embassy, when approached by Xinhua, said the embassy is contacting Pakistan's relevant departments to verify the incident.

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