Sunday, July 7, 2013

Pakistan: Czech Diplomats Evaluates Video-clip of Two Czech Women Kidnapped in March

According to AFP, the Czech Foreign Ministry examined a video-clip on Wednesday (July 3) to determine its authenticity that turned up on the Internet and purportedly includes two-month-old footage of two women kidnapped in Balochistan on March 13, 2013.
The two-minute video, which only shows the two Czech women, Antonie Chrastecka and Hana Humpalova, both 24, identify themselves as having been kidnapped, but revealed no information on the identity of the kidnappers.

The video then pans to alleged images of their passports with the purported voice of one of the women as the soundtrack: “Today is 16 April, after one day of Boston (Marathon) bomb blast in USA.”

“Our health are in good condition but our life in risk. Thanks for all who are helping us,” she says in accented and broken English.

COMMENT: The two psychology students were kidnapped while being escorted by a tribal policeman after crossing into Pakistan from Iran. 

According to Reuters, the kidnappers of Chrastecka and Humpalova, both 24, have demanded that Aafia Siddiqui, 41, a neuro-scientist who was given an 86-year sentence by a US court in 2010 for shooting at FBI agents and soldiers in Afghanistan be released. 

Dr. Siddiqui emigrated to the US in 1990 and obtained a PhD in 2001 from Brandeis University. 

In early 2003, Siddiqui returned to Pakistan. In March 2003, she was named as a courier and financier for al-Qaeda by Khalid Sheikh Muhammad and was placed on a "wanted for questioning" list by the FBI. She subsequently disappeared until she was arrested in Ghazni, Afghanistan, with documents and notes for making bombs plus containers of sodium cyanide. 

Siddiqui was indicted in New York City District Court in September 2008 on charges of attempted murder and assault stemming from an incident in an interview with US authorities in Ghazni, charges which Siddiqui denied. After 18 months in detention, she was tried and convicted in early 2010 and sentenced to 86 years in prison in a federal detention facility in Texas.