Belgian FM to Visit Iran

Belgian Foreign Minister Kare de Gucht will leave for Iran Saturday to meet with Stefaan Boeve, a Belgian national who was freed yesterday after he was kidnapped by bandits in southeastern Iran last month. De Gucht emphasized that the captive was released following Iranian intervention as the matter was an internal issue and the Belgian government did not intervene.

The man’s father said he did not know whether a ransom was paid for the release of his son.

Boeve was kidnapped by bandits en route Fahraj-Zahedan road in Iran’s southeastern south-eastern province of Sistan and Balouchestan.

According to the Interior Ministry’s Information Dissemination Council,
Boeve was taken hostage by a gang of drug traffickers in the province of Sistan and Balouchestan and later transferred to Pakistan.

The report also said that Boeve has been released and transferred to Iran as a result of efforts made by the Interior ministry’s security department and the security council of Sistan and Balouchestan Province.

The freed Belgian would soon be handed over to his country’s officials, the report added.

Boeve, 28, and his wife Carla Van den Eeckhout, 37, were both abducted on Fahraj-Zahedan road in Sistan and Balouchestan Province on August 12.

While Carla was released by Iranian security forces a few days after the hostage taking incident, efforts to release her husband lead to nowhere for weeks.

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