DUBAI - Five Iranian border guards reportedly seized and held captive in Pakistan for three weeks have been freed, an Iranian military official has been quoted as saying, although Pakistani authorities said they had no knowledge of the incident.
Iran's official news agency IRNA said the Iranians, abducted by Sunni Muslim militants on Feb. 6 in the restive Sistan-Baluchistan province, were among 11 foreign hostages freed in an operation by Pakistani forces.
Its Fars news agency on Saturday also quoted General Massoud Jazaerisemi as saying: "Five Iranian troops who had been kidnapped on our eastern borders and transferred to Pakistan were freed."
He did not elaborate on the circumstances of the release, only saying that "the country's entire police and security apparatus were involved in this matter".
However, Pakistani authorities appeared to have no knowledge of the operation.