Two BRAC (Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee) officials working in Afghanistan have been abducted by unidentified gunmen.
They were going from Kunduz to Baghlan when their vehicle was intercepted by armed men around 4pm Thursday.
The two are BRAC Afghanistan’s chief engineer Hazi Shawkat and chief accountant Md Sirajul Islam Khan, BRAC’s Afghanistan country representative Md Anowar Hossain told journalists.
Shawkat hails from Kishoreganj and Khan is from Pabna Sadar’s Dublia village.
“We’ve informed the local police and the interior ministry. They have taken certain steps. The vehicle’s driver and an Afghan national, who was with them, have been arrested.”
It was not yet clear if Taliban militants were behind the abduction in the northern region of the country.
A BRAC team from the capital city of Kabul was on its way to Kunduz, said Rony Mirza, the NGO’s communications head in Dhaka.
Meanwhile, Khan’s family has urged Bangladesh authorities to take every step necessary to secure the two men, his cousin Abdul Khalek told bdnews24.com.
“My cousin’s colleagues called us last night to tell us about what happened. My uncle and aunt are worried that he’ll never return… ”
BRAC, the world’s largest NGO, set up its international operations in Afghanistan in 2002. Around 400 offices in the country’s 34 provinces provide education, healthcare, training, and development tools.
Bangladeshi officials working in the war-ravaged country have been attacked several times.
In May 2012, militants stormed into a BRAC office in Ghor province, shooting one official dead. An engineer was killed and six officials abducted in December 2010.
Another BRAC official was killed by unidentified gunmen in September 2007. The same year, another official named Nurul Islam was released after being held captive for 83 days.
In 2008, two officials were abducted from the Ghazni province but released after ten days. – Agencies