US man abducted in Afghanistan appears in newly posted video

Mark Frerichs is believed to be kidnapped by the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani network two years ago

Taliban flags fly at a square in the city of Ghazni, southwest of Kabul. — AP file
Taliban flags fly at a square in the city of Ghazni, southwest of Kabul. — AP file


Published: Fri 1 Apr 2022, 9:15 PM

An American man kidnapped in Afghanistan two years ago is seen in a video pleading for his release so that he can be reunited with his family, according to a recording posted on Friday by The New Yorker magazine.

Mark Frerichs, a Navy veteran and civilian contractor who is believed held by the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani network, appears by himself in the video, sitting upright before a dark curtain.

In the video, which he says was recorded on November 28, 2021, he says he has patiently awaited his release and adds: “I’d like to ask the leadership of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan: Please release me. Release me so that I may be re-united with my family. Thank you.”


The video was posted on Friday by The New Yorker, which says it obtained it from an unidentified individual in Afghanistan.

An FBI spokeswoman in Washington declined to comment on the video’s authenticity, but a sister of Frerichs, Charlene Cakora, said in a statement Friday that she was grateful to the Taliban for releasing the video and described it as “public confirmation of our family’s long-held belief that he is alive after more than two years in captivity.”

She appealed to President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken to step up efforts to get Frerich released.

“We consider this to be an important indicator of the Taliban’s interest in seeking to arrange for Mark’s immediate release. President Biden and Secretary Blinken, we urge you to take bold and decisive action to bring Mark home,” she added.

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