A Pakistani rebel group claiming to be holding an American UN official hostage said Monday it had extended a 72-hour deadline for the government to meet demands for his release. John Solecki, who heads the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) in Quetta -- the capital of Pakistan's restive southwestern Baluchistan province -- was abducted at gunpoint on February 2 while travelling to work. His driver was killed. It was the most high-profile Western kidnapping in Pakistan since 2002, when US journalist Daniel Pearl was snatched and beheaded by Al-Qaeda militants. "We have decided to extended the deadline on the appeal of our honourable Baluch leaders," said a spokesman for the Baluchistan Liberation United Front (BLUF) in a telephone call to reporters at the Quetta Press Club. "A new deadline will be announced later," said the spokesman, who identified himself as Mir Shahak. A grainy video released by the kidnappers and shown on Pakistani television channels late Friday showed a blindfolded man -- purportedly Solecki -- appealing to the United Nations for his release and saying he was unwell. In an accompanying statement, the kidnappers demanded the release of 141 women Baluch detainees they say are in Pakistani custody, and information about 6,000 men "missing" from operations to put down Baluchistan's insurgency. "The government says it has not taken any women into custody, but at the same time admits there is a list of 800 missing persons so it should bring them before the public," said the caller on Monday. Pakistan said Saturday that the authorities had some "good leads" in the effort to free the kidnapped official after interior ministry chief Rehman Malik travelled to Quetta to oversee the case. Malik denied any Baluch women were in custody and condemned the kidnappers as "anti-Pakistan and anti-Islam." The United Nations has expressed deep concern over the fate of Solecki, saying he has a medical condition that requires regular medication.