A senior official of the United Nations refugee agency, John Solecki, has been kidnapped in Quetta. According to Police sources, the gunmen stopped his vehicle on his way to work, seizing him and killing his driver, a local man. No group has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping. The police said roadblocks had been set up on the roads out of Quetta and on border crossings to Afghanistan. It is pertinent to mention that UNHCR has been working for years in Quetta with refugees from Afghanistan.
Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi strongly condemned the kidnapping of John Solecki, Head of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Office at Quetta this morning. In this unfortunate and dastardly terrorist act, Syed Hashim Raza, the driver of Mr. Solecki was killed.
The Government of Pakistan is taking all necessary measures for safe and early recovery of Mr. Solecki. The Foreign Minister also extended deep condolences to the bereaved family of Syed Hashim Raza, the deceased driver.
The United Nations has also strongly condemned the kidnapping and killing of its officials in Quetta. The UN has conveyed the extreme shock and dismay felt by the whole UN community at the death of Mr. Syed Hashim, driver of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the abduction of Mr. John Solecki, Head of the UNHCR Office in Quetta.
“We strongly condemn this attack on humanitarian workers in Pakistan who have been doing their utmost to deliver their humanitarian mission”
It said that the families of both staff members were contacted to convey our deepest sympathy to the family of Syed Hashim and to express our concern and solidarity with Mr. Solecki’s family. The United Nations was now taking all possible measures to secure his release.-SANA