CIA Director Mike Pompeo revealed for the first time Thursday that Caitlan Coleman and Joshua Boyle spent all five years of their captivity in Pakistan.
“We had a great outcome last week when we were able to get back four U.S. citizens who had been held for five years inside of Pakistan,” Pompeo said while addressing the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a Washington-based foreign policy think-tank.
As Reuters reports, that statement contradicts the official Pakistan story that the U.S.-Canadian family was rescued from radical Islamic extremists after entering Pakistan from Afghanistan. Coleman and Boyle were kidnapped by Haqqani militants in 2012 while apparently backpacking in a Taliban-controlled sector of Afghanistan. Pompeo’s clarification would now indicate that the terrorist cell moved the couple from Afghanistan to Pakistan shortly after they apprehended them.
Members of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence are believed to actively support the Haqqani network though the Pakistan government refuses to acknowledge any connection. The Haqqani held U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl captive.
Since coming back to Canada last week, Boyle has been staying with his parents in Smiths Falls, Ontario and has spoken frequently with Canadian media, describing himself as a naive “Mennonite hippy-child” who was in the wrong place at the wrong time at the time of the abduction. Boyle was previously married to former al-Qaida terrorst Omar Khadr’s sister, Zaynab Khadr. She has expressed sympathy for the 9/11 terrorists.
On Wednesday, Coleman was rushed to hospital for undisclosed reasons.