Swiss couple released in Pakistan
updated 12:29 PM EDT, Thu March 15, 2012
The Swiss identity cards of a couple, kidnapped by the Taliban, appear on a table at a police station in Quetta, Pakistan, in July.
- The husband and wife say they escaped from the Taliban, the Pakistan military says
- The two were kidnapped in July
- The Pakistan Taliban say the group released the couple
Islamabad, Pakistan (CNN) -- A Swiss couple -- kidnapped in July while traveling in Pakistan's volatile southwestern Balochistan province -- are free, Pakistani military and Taliban officials said Thursday.
"The Swiss ambassador in Islamabad is in direct contact with them and has ascertained that they are uninjured and that, given the circumstances, they are doing well," the Swiss Department of Foreign Affairs said in a statement. "They are currently in a safe place in Pakistan. They will return to Switzerland as soon as possible."
The couple -- Daniela Widmer and David Och -- were taken by helicopter from the Miranshah region to Peshawar and then to Islamabad, the statement said, adding that Pakistani authorities informed the Swiss Embassy in Islamabad of the development.
The husband and wife said they escaped from the Taliban upon reaching a military checkpoint near the city of Miranshah in North Waziristan, a tribal region in northwest Pakistan, said Athar Abbas, a Pakistani military spokesman.
But a spokesman for the Pakistan Taliban, Ihsanullah Ihsan, said the group released the couple after a council of elders was convened.
The two were grabbed at gunpoint in July while traveling in the town of Loralai, senior provincial administration official Sohail Rehman Baloch said at the time.
Locals witnessed the kidnapping of the pair, who had been headed to the city of Quetta, Baloch said.
The couple entered the province from Dera Ghazi Khan in the Punjab District and registered at a police checkpoint, Baloch said.
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:26 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
updated 7:09 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
updated 1:01 PM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
updated 10:48 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
updated 12:07 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
updated 7:15 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
updated 7:06 PM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
updated 7:37 AM EST, Wed February 6, 2013
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
updated 2:18 AM EST, Fri February 8, 2013
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.