Rescued Taliban hostage Canadian family reached home

Rescued Taliban hostage Canadian family reached home

Canada (Web Desk): Joshua Boyle, his American wife and their three children arrived in Toronto on Friday after being freed from captivity in Pakistan, the Canadian government announced.

The couple was captured by the Taliban while hiking in Afghanistan in 2012, and then turned over to the affiliated militant Haqqani network in Pakistan. All three of their children were born in captivity.

The foreign ministry said in a statement, “Today, we join the Boyle family in rejoicing over the long-awaited return to Canada of their loved ones”.

“Canada has been actively engaged on Mr Boyle's case at all levels, and we will continue to support him and his family now that they have returned,” it said, asking that the family's privacy be respected.

The Pakistan Army freed the family by acting on information received from the US intelligence services.

On Thursday Boyle refused a return trip aboard a US military aircraft, over concerns he could face American scrutiny over his previous marriage to the sister of a Guantanamo detainee.

He chose to fly back from Islamabad to Canada on commercial airlines via London.

In 2009, Boyle was married to Zaynab Khadr, the sister of Omar Khadr, a Canadian captured in battle in 2002 in Afghanistan and held at the US prison facility at Guantanamo Bay before being turned over to Canada and released in 2015.

Boyle was active in the campaign to win Khadr's release from Guantanamo and transfer to Canada. On Thursday, Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said Boyle was not a target of investigation in Canada.

Boyle's parents live 80 kilometres southwest of Ottawa.