QUETTA: Unknown armed men kidnapped at least 10 people, including a customs officer, from Shaban, a picnic point on the outskirts of the provincial capital, on Thursday.

According to officials, a large number of people went to the Shaban area for picnic the other day, during which a group of armed men encircled the mountains and started checking the national identity cards of the picnickers.

The armed men separated 14 individuals from the other picnickers after finding Punjab addresses on their identity cards and took them away to an unknown destination.

An eyewitness said the armed men later released four individuals, but “took away 10 people whose nat­ional identity cards showed addresses in Punjab”.

“A customs official was also among the 10 kidna­pped people who went to Shaban for picnic,” an official said.

Following the incident, security forces reached the area and started investigation. “Security forces have launched a search operation in a nearby mountainous area to trace the kidnappers,” the official said.

According to sources, the security forces have taken at least six suspects into custody for interrogation.

Meanwhile, the banned Baloch Liberation Army has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping of 10 individuals from Shaban. A spokesman for the outlawed outfit said its Fateh squad carried out the operation.

Published in Dawn, June 21st, 2024

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