Ontario man held by Taliban recovering after ordeal: Trudeau

TORONTO -- An Ontario man freed by the Taliban after being held hostage for five years has yet to return to Canada but is recovering from his ordeal, the prime minister said Wednesday.

See Full Article

Justin Trudeau's comments about Colin Rutherford offered a hint at the condition of the man who was abruptly set free in Afghanistan earlier this week.

"We are continuing to monitor his recovery," Trudeau told reporters while visiting city hall in Toronto. "Obviously a very difficult ordeal for five years. We look forward to him returning to Canada soon."

The Taliban has said it freed Rutherford on Monday "on grounds of humanitarian sympathy and sublime Islamic ethics."

The federal government hasn't said where Rutherford is currently, or when he'll return to his family in Toronto.

Rutherford was on a private vacation in Afghanistan when he was captured by the Taliban in November 2010.

His release was suddenly announced on Monday by Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion, who provided few details, but said that the government of Qatar had been involved in bringing about Rutherford's release.

Trudeau publicly acknowledged the role of the Middle Eastern country when discussing Rutherford's case on Wednesday.

"We appreciate the support that the government of Qatar gave," he said. "Everyone worked hard to try and secure Mr. Rutherford's release."

The Taliban has also confirmed Qatar's involvement and has said it had been holding Rutherford in Afghanistan's northeastern Ghazni province.

A local Afghan police chief has said the Canadian's release involved a helicopter landing to scoop Rutherford to freedom as fighter jets flew overhead.

The last indication Rutherford's family had that he was alive came in a 2011 video released by insurgents where he answered questions. An accompanying email accused Rutherford, then 26, of being a spy.

In the video, Rutherford, who is from Toronto, insisted he was not a spy and had travelled to Afghanistan to study historical sites, old buildings and shrines.

Rutherford's brother has called the Canadian's release "incredible news" and has said Rutherford's well-being is a priority.

Rutherford was working as an auditor with the Canadian Circulations Audit Board in Toronto when he went on vacation to Afghanistan.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • 10,000 construction heaters recalled in Canada over fire risk

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO – A popular construction heater is being recalled following two separate reports that it overheated and caught fire. The recall covers the Mastercraft Construction Heater. According to Health Canada, approximately 10,000 of the 4,800-watt heaters were sold at Canadian Tire locations between 1997 and 2014, when they were discontinued. Source
  • Judges question continued secrecy of parts of Mueller report

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- A federal appeals panel is voicing skepticism over the Justice Department's claim it can defy Congress' request for secret material from the Mueller report. Two of the three judges who heard arguments at a hearing Monday seemed prepared to order at least some of the material sought by the House for its impeachment inquiry to be turned over. Source
  • 3 killed in shooting at Walmart in Oklahoma: police chief

    World News CTV News
    DUNCAN, Okla. -- Two men and a woman were fatally shot Monday outside a Walmart store in Oklahoma, the chief of police said. Two victims were shot inside a car and the third was in the parking lot outside the store in Duncan, Police Chief Danny Ford said. Source
  • Boy killed, girl in critical condition after two cars collide with moose

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- One child is dead and another is fighting for her life after a crash involving two vehicles and a moose in western Quebec. The collision occurred Sunday afternoon, when a vehicle hit the moose on route 323 in Notre-Dame-de-la-Paix, about 150 kilometres northwest of Montreal. Source
  • 32 arrested at Indian call centre that targeted Canadians

    World News CTV News
    TORONTO – Indian authorities say they have shut down a call centre where dozens of people tried to dupe Canadians into handing over money through a phone scam involving social insurance numbers. Sameer Sharma, a deputy police commissioner in New Delhi, said in a statement that the "swanky international scam call centre targeting Canadian citizens" first came to the attention of police on Friday. Source
  • 'We're always ready': Life aboard Canada's HMCS Ottawa enforcing sanctions against North Korea

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO – Commander Alex Barlow’s day starts like many Canadians - with an early morning, 6 a.m. workout. But, while many enjoy the comfort of a treadmill at home or a local gym, Barlow’s is aboard a 5,000-tonne warship – the HMCS Ottawa, a Halifax-class frigate in the Royal Canadian Navy fleet currently travelling to the Philippines Sea. Source
  • Bridge collapse in France leaves 15-year-old girl dead

    World News CTV News
    PARIS -- Authorities say a bridge has collapsed in rural southwest France, killing a 15-year-old girl and leaving at least one person missing. Toulouse prosecutor Dominique Alzeari said the girl's mother was rescued by witnesses after several vehicles, including hers, fell into the Tarn River on Monday morning near the village of Mirepoix-sur-Tarn. Source
  • University of Calgary encourages its exchange students to vacate Hong Kong

    World News CTV News
    CALGARY – The University of Calgary has offered assistance to two of its students who are currently participating in an exchange program in Hong Kong as police and protesters continue to clash in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory. Source
  • Trump says he'll 'strongly consider' Pelosi offer to testify in impeachment inquiry

    World News CBC News
    President Donald Trump suggested Monday he might be willing to offer written testimony in the House impeachment inquiry over whether he pressured Ukraine's president to investigate Joe Biden and his son while withholding aid to the country. Source
  • U.S. officials knew of Ukraine's Trump anxiety: AP

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Despite his denials, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy was feeling pressure from the Trump administration to investigate former Vice-President Joe Biden before his July phone call with U.S. President Donald Trump that has led to impeachment hearings. Source