Gul Bukhari returns home after brief ‘disappearance’


–British High Commission ‘trying to reach out to her for consular assistance’

–Bukhari thankful to civil society, journalists for coming together in solidarity


The British High Commission in Pakistan has expressed apprehension over the brief abduction of journalist and activist Gul Bukhari, saying the commission is reaching out to her for consular assistance.

Bukhari, 52, was ‘abducted’ in Lahore by ‘unknown persons’ on Tuesday night. She, however, was ‘released’ after several hours following an uproar on social media after her abduction.

Taking notice of the incident, the British High Commission said: “We are very concerned at reports of Gul Bukhari’s abduction last night. As a dual Pakistani-British national, the British High Commission is reaching out with consular assistance.”

A British MP, Mark Field, also took to the Twitter, asserting that the British government’s commitment to freedom of expression.

“Deeply concerned by reports of the abduction of British-Pakistani journalist Gul Bukhari in Lahore, Pakistan, last night. Relieved that she has now been released. The UK strongly supports freedom of expression which is a cornerstone of democracy.”

Gul Bukhari couldn’t be reached for a comment; however, her relative, journalist Issam Ahmed, shared her message on Twitter. “I would like to express my deep gratitude and love to my friends, family, colleagues and supporters in civil society, journalism and politics across the board, for coming together in solidarity in concern for my well being last night. I am well and would request privacy at this stage,” the message quoted Bukhari as saying.

According to Gul Bukhari’s colleagues, she was on her way to a private media outlet’s studio to appear in a show when she was reportedly intercepted by unidentified men and forced into their vehicle blindfolded.

As per the claims, her driver was also assaulted by the unidentified persons. However, the ‘missing’ journalist returned home later at night.

A large number of activists, journalists, besides Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz, expressed concern over the alleged abduction of Bukhari by ‘unknown persons’.

“Extremely disturbing, worrisome news of @gulbukhari abduction. This is just cruel & worst kind of oppression. Sad day. #BringBackGulBukhari,” former first daughter tweeted.


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