RAWALPINDI — Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif has telephoned Ashraf Ghani, President of Afghanistan and urged him to cooperate for safe recovery of Russian national among seven crew of a copter that crash-landed earlier today, reported Friday.
President Ghani has assured the Army Chief of extending help to the Punjab government in the issue.
A helicopter owned by Punjab government was heading towards Uzbekistan on Thursday for repairing purposes but due to technical reasons, the helicopter crash-landed in Afghan territory near the area of Logar.
Seven people including the crew were taken hostage by Taliban after which the helicopter was set ablaze.
Additional Chief Secretary Shumail Ahmad Khawaja stated that the helicopter was sent for over hauling. Punjab government, in this regard approached federal government and further information had been gathered for investigation, he added.
According to the details, helicopter flew at 8:45 am from Peshawar and was scheduled to reach Uzbekistan’s city Bukhara. Helicopter’s tail number was APBDGF. Foreign Office (FO) stated that Afghan authorities permitted the helicopter to fly through Afghan territory.
Chief Pilot Colonel (retd) Safdar, Co-pilot Colonel (retd) Shafiq, Major (retd) Safdar, Engineer Lieutenant Colonel (retd) Nasir, Hawaladar Kausar, Daud and one Russian national are those included in the crew.
On the other hand, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif met with the families of the crew and assured them that the government was doing everything possible for their recovery.
The Chief Minister also called on premier Nawaz Sharif and Army Chief and discussed safe recovery of the hostages.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said that the federation is in contact with the Afghan government for harmless recovery of the crew.