American family kidnapped by Afghan Taliban freed: Pakistan army

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Pakistani soldiers have freed a North American family of five who were being held hostage by the Afghan Taliban, Pakistan's military says.

The communique continued that United States (US) intelligence agencies had been tracking them and shared their shifting across to Pakistan on Oct 11, 2017, through the Kurram Agency border.

Coleman and her husband Josh Boyle were captured while hiking in Afghanistan in 2012 and were featured in a hostage video in December 2016 pleading for their release. The couple had three children while in captivity.

"Pak Army recovered five Western hostages including one Canadian, his U.S. national wife and their three children from terrorist custody", an army statement said.

The rescued hostages "are being repatriated to their country of origin", it added.

Coleman, 31, was pregnant at the time of abduction. The group released two videos of the hostages. The two were abducted five years ago while traveling in Afghanistan and have been held by the Haqqani network.

The US military has long believed that Pakistan's principal intelligence organization, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency, has maintained links with the Taliban, particularly the Haqqani Network.

Defense Secretary James Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford told Congress last week Pakistan would no longer be a sanctuary for terrorism.

Trump has made getting tougher with Pakistan in an effort to get them to crack-down on the Taliban a central tenant of his recently announced strategy for Afghanistan and the wider region. This is a country that respects us now.