Indian worker kidnapped in Herat

Kabul: An Indian aid worker has been abducted in Afghanistan’s Herat province by unknown gunmen on Monday.

Confirming the incident, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin wrote on Twitter – “Indian national working with an NGO in Herat province of Afghanistan has been kidnapped. Our mission is pursuing the matter with local authorities”.

The 47-year-old working with an NGO was visiting a school in Sohadat village of Herat to assess the work on a project when he was kidnapped. Media reports have identified the aid worker as Prem Kumar, country director of Jesuit Refugee Service.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for the incident, which comes close on the heels of an attack on the Indian consulate in Herat on May 23 by four heavily armed gunmen who were killed by Indian and Afghan security personnel as they tried to storm the mission.

Herat lies near Afghanistan’s border with Iran and is considered one of the safer cities in the country.

AFP quoted James Stapleton, the international communications coordinator of the Catholic organisation, as saying, “He was abducted as he was about to return”. It said Kumar had been working in Afghanistan for the past four years.



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