[Everybody wants to be on “Taliban TV,” to negotiate for their kid’s release. Why were these people in Afghanistan in the first place? It is perhaps to be expected that the next anti-American Americans to want to negotiate publicly with the Taliban would be someone like this Joshua Boyle, who is allegedly connected by family history to “al-Qaeda,” or to bin Laden (SEE BOYLE-KHADR FAMILY TREE BELOW).]
The families of Caitlan Coleman and Joshua Boyle say the deal to free Sgt Bowe Bergdahl prompted them to come forward.
Video: Missing Couple Shown In ‘Taliban Video’
The family of an American women reportedly being held captive with her husband and their child in Afghanistan has come forward with videos that show them asking Barack Obama for help.
The videos, obtained by The AP news agency, are the first clues into what happened to Caitlan Coleman and Joshua Boyle following their disappearance in late 2012.
The two videos were emailed to Ms Coleman’s father last summer by an Afghan man who identified himself as having ties to the Taliban, the AP reported.
The families told the news agency that they decided to come forward with the videos now in light of the recent publicity over the release of US Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl.
Sgt Bergdahl was captured in 2009 after he apparently walked away from his military post in the Paktika province, along the Pakistani border.
His freedom nearly five years later was secured on Saturday after the Obama administration controversially agreed to release five Taliban leaders from the US prison at Guantanamo Bay.
The families of Ms Coleman and Mr Boyle told the AP that they were disappointed that their loved ones were not freed as part of the same deal.
Mr Boyle’s father, Canadian judge Patrick Boyle, told the AP: “It would be no more appropriate to have our government turn their backs on their citizens than to turn their backs on those who serve.”
The couple, who relatives described as well-intentioned, but naive adventure seekers, vanished while travelling in a mountainous region near the Afghan capital. Ms Coleman was pregnant at the time of their disappearance.
The two videos sent to Ms Coleman’s father last July and September are the only proof-of-life the families have received since.
In one video, Ms Coleman, 28, appeals to “my president, Barack Obama” for help.
In the second video, she says: “I would ask that my family and my government do everything that they can to bring my husband, child and I to safety and freedom.”
Ms Coleman is seen in the video wearing a black garment that covers most of her body, while her husband is seated beside her with a long beard.
US law enforcement officials investigating the couple’s disappearance told the AP that they believe the videos are authentic, but said they provide no details on when or where the footage was shot.
Relatives said the last direct contact they had from the couple was an email from Mr Boyle sent on October 8, 2012. He told family he was sending the email from an internet cafe in a “unsafe” part of Afghanistan.
The last withdrawals from the couple’s bank account were made in Kabul on October 8 and 9.
An Afghan official told the AP two months later that the couple had been abducted in the Taliban stronghold Wardak Province.
This chart from The Globe and Mail maps out the connections between the Khadr and Boyle families