The American doctor rescued from the Taliban in Afghanistan Saturday by U.S. Special Operations Forces is the medical adviser for a Colorado Springs NGO, his employer confirmed today.
Dr. Dilip Joseph and two colleagues were kidnapped by a group of armed men while returning from a visit to a rural medical clinic in eastern Kabul Province, according to a statement from their employer, Colorado Springs-based Morning Star Development. The statement said the three were eventually taken to a mountainous area about 50 miles from the border with Pakistan.
Morning Star’s crisis management team in Colorado Springs was in contact with the hostages and their captors almost immediately, the statement said.
On Saturday evening in Afghanistan, two of the three hostages were released. Morning Star did not release their names in order to protect their identities. Dr. Joseph remained in captivity.
Gen. John R. Allen, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, ordered the mission to rescue Joseph when “intelligence showed that Joseph was in imminent danger of injury or death”, according to a military press release.
Morning Star said Joseph was in good condition and will probably return home to Colorado Springs in the next few days.
A Defense Department official told ABC’s Luis Martinez that Joseph can walk, but was beaten up by his captors.
Joseph has worked for Morning Star Development for three years, the organization said, and travels frequently to Afghanistan.
“Morning Star Development does state categorically that we paid no ransom, money or other consideration to the captors or anyone else to secure the release of these hostages,” the organization said.
Joseph can be seen here in a Morning Star Development video:
“Due to security concerns, some cannot be named but their help will never be forgotten. Among these who cannot be named we include all of the courageous members of the U.S. military who successfully rescued Mr. Joseph as they risked their own lives doing so,” the statement said.