On Sunday, June 18, an American citizen working for the World Bank was kidnapped in the Karte Char area of Kabul, according to Kabul police. The police stated that the kidnappers posed as Afghan security forces and were able to get the victim to stop his vehicle on his way to work. The individual, whose identity has not been released, was working with the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture through the World Bank.
Foreigners in Afghanistan are at a high risk of being kidnapped for ransom. On March 14, an Australian woman who was kidnapped by unknown gunmen on November 5, 2016, in the capital city of Kabul was released. In April 2016, an Australian aid worker was abducted from her house in Jalalabad and was freed four months later. In August 2016, an American and an Australian national were kidnapped from the American University in Kabul and have not been released.
Nearly 200 people were kidnapped by Taliban fighters in northern Kunduz province in June 2016. Most were released, but several were killed and 20 others were kept hostage.
As a reminder, Western governments advise their citizens against all nonessential travel to Afghanistan. Individuals traveling around Afghanistan, particularly outside Kabul, should seek professional security advice and support, and continually reassess their personal security. In Kabul, take particular care on Airport Road, Jalalabad Road, and Darulaman Road; avoid traveling on Jalalabad and Darulaman roads during commute or other busy times (approximately 06:00-08:00, 09:00-11:00, and 15:00-16:00 [local time]).