Afghan traders issue 48-hour ultimatum to govt to secure release of abducted trader

Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) has strongly condemned the abduction of a trader allegedly by the National Directorate of Security (NDS) personnel.

Addressing a press conference in Kabul on Sunday, ACCI deputy chief Khan Jan Alokozai issued a 48-hour ultimatum to the government to secure safe release of the abducted trader.

In case the government fails to do so, the traders would stop the supply of food items to Kabul, Mr. Alokozai warned.

The abducted man has been identified as Wahdatullah, son of Haji Mohammad Asif, who is the chairman of food traders’ union.

He was reportedly abducted from Bagrami district of Kabul on Saturday by some gunmen wearing the NDS uniform.

Expressing grave concern over the spate of kidnappings in recent months, Mr. Alokozai said more than 30 traders have been abducted and one of them killed over the past two months.

According to sources, most of these kidnappings are carried out by local criminals, masquerading as the security personnel or insurgents, for ransom.

“Traders have been increasingly targeted by criminal gangs in Kabul in recent months to extort hefty ransom money from them,” says a source, wishing anonymity.

He says the police have failed to crack down on the ubiquitous network of these criminal gangs in the capital city. 

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