Abducted Australian aid worker freed in Afghanistan

2016-08-29 16:48
Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop (File, AP).

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop (File, AP).

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Kabul - Afghan special forces have rescued a kidnapped Australian aid worker, officials said on Monday, four months after she was taken at gunpoint in the country's volatile east.

Katherine Jane Wilson, said to be aged around 60, is "safe and well," Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said, without disclosing when she was released or who was behind her abduction.

Unidentified masked gunmen kidnapped Wilson from Jalalabad, near the border with Pakistan, in late April when she was visiting the city for a women's embroidery project.

"I confirm that Kerry Jane Wilson, who was abducted in Afghanistan in April this year, has been released, and she is now safe and well," Bishop said in a statement, without saying whether she is still in Afghanistan.

The minister, who has previously said Australia does not pay ransom for kidnappers, voiced relief for Wilson and her family but would not provide details of how she was freed.

Afghanistan's main intelligence agency, the National Directorate of Security, said Wilson was released in a "special operation," without offering details.

"As a result of our efforts, she has been safely released. Several suspects have been detained and our investigation is still going on," NDS said in a brief statement.

Wilson, a well-known aid worker in the country, ran a non-governmental organisation known as Zardozi, which promotes the work of Afghan artisans - particularly women.

Growing insecurity

Following her abduction an Australian man was seized, along with an American colleague, in Kabul by gunmen wearing police uniforms.

The two foreigners, professors from the American University of Afghanistan, were pulled from their vehicle earlier this month after the kidnappers smashed the passenger side window and hauled them out.

Bishop said she "deeply appreciates" the support of Afghan authorities in facilitating Wilson's release.

But she added: "To protect those who remain captive or face the risk of kidnapping in Afghanistan and elsewhere, the government will not comment on the circumstances of Kerry Jane's release".

Read more on:    afghanistan  |  australia  |  abductions

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.