Canadian-US family held captive in Pakistan have left the country

Pakistani officials say a Canadian man, his American wife and their three children who spent five years in captivity have left Pakistan.

Two security officials say Joshua Boyle, Caitlan Coleman and their children left by plane from Islamabad, but did not say where the family was headed.

The BBC was reporting early Friday that the family was headed to London, England.

The couple was kidnapped in Afghanistan in October 2012 while on a backpacking trip. All three of their children were born in captivity.

Pakistan said Thursday that it had rescued the family after their captors moved them across the border from Afghanistan.

Boyle’s parents, who live in Smiths Falls, Ont., said Thursday evening that their son and his family intend to come to Canada.

Patrick Boyle said the family was safe “but exhausted.”

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, who has met with the Boyle family in the past, said Thursday that they had endured an “absolutely horrible ordeal.”

Freeland refused to describe the circumstances of the release, citing security reasons but said Canada had been working with the U.S., Pakistan and Afghanistan, whom she thanked.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, speaking in Mexico City, thanked U.S. and Pakistani officials for their efforts in freeing the captives.

“We’re pleased that the ordeal they’ve been through over these past years has finally come to an end,” Trudeau said Thursday night during a news conference.


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