Rest of Asia

Pakistan says bodies of 16 kidnapped miners found after 10 years

Filed on April 9, 2021
A file photo shows protesters burning tyres against killing of coal mine workers by unknown gunmen near the Machh coal field, in Quetta in January this year. — AP file

The 16 miners went missing in December 2011 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province

The decomposed bodies of 16 miners kidnapped nearly a decade ago in northwestern Pakistan have been found in a mass grave, officials said on Friday.

The miners went missing in December 2011 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province — once a stronghold of Pakistan’s Taleban, who raised funds by kidnapping workers for ransom.

Members of Pakistan’s Rescue 1122 squad had been searching an area some 50 kilometres southwest of Peshawar for two months after getting new information on the case from relatives of those kidnapped.

“The medical teams have examined and confirmed that they are all sixteen,” Kamran Bangash, the provincial information minister, said.

“All... are decomposed and beyond recognition”, he added.

Bilal Ahmad Faizi, a spokesman for the rescue service, confirmed the operation.

Earlier this year, 10 miners were kidnapped and then murdered in an attack claimed by the Daesh group in the restive southwestern Machh area.

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