News / Canada

Kidnapped Canadian family released after 5 years of being held hostage

Boyle, 34, and Coleman, 31, were kidnapped by the Taliban-linked Haqqani network in October 2012. Coleman was five-months pregnant at the time and the couple was backpacking through Central Asia.

Canadian Joshua Boyle, his American wife Caitlan Coleman and their children are on their way home after five years held hostage.

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Canadian Joshua Boyle, his American wife Caitlan Coleman and their children are on their way home after five years held hostage.

Canadian Joshua Boyle, his American wife Caitlan Coleman and their children are on their way home after five years held hostage by the Haqqani network.

Boyle called his parents early Thursday morning to tell of their rescue. He also told his father that they’ve had a third baby in custody, a little girl who was born two months ago.

“Josh said he was doing pretty well for someone who has spent the last five years in an underground prison,” Patrick Boyle told the Star early Thursday, about his conversation with his son.

Boyle, 34, and Coleman, 31, were kidnapped by the Taliban-linked Haqqani network in October 2012. Coleman was five-months pregnant at the time and the couple was backpacking through Central Asia.

Their families did not know they had crossed into Afghanistan.

Coleman gave birth to her first son in custody, followed by a second boy a few years later.

Their daughter was born this summer.

Pakistan’s government issued a press released Thursday confirming the rescue “through an intelligence-based operation by Pakistan troops and intelligence agencies.”

The statement said that U.S. agencies had been tracking the family and kidnappers in the Kurram Agency, an area in Pakistan on Afghanistan’s border and that the rescue was based “on actionable intelligence from U.S. authorities.”

“The success underscores the importance of timely intelligence sharing and Pakistan’s continued commitment towards fighting this menace through cooperation between two forces against a common enemy.”

Those comments appear to support what U.S. President Donald Trump alluded to in a speech Wednesday in Coleman’s home state of Pennsylvania. “Something happened today, where a country that totally disrespected us called with some very, very important news,” Trump said. “And one of my generals came in. They said, ‘You know, I have to tell you, a year ago they would’ve never done that.’ It was a great sign of respect. You’ll probably be hearing about it over the next few days. But this is a country that did not respect us. This is a country that respects us now. The world is starting to respect us again, believe me.”

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