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Ankara 'in intensive talks' with Kabul over kidnapped Turks

Taliban militants, who were arrested by Afghan joint forces, stand as they are presented to the media at the governors home in Jalalabad east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Dec 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)

ANKARA: Turkey confirmed on Monday that eight of its nationals were abducted by Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan after their helicopter made an emergency landing and said it was holding "intensive talks" with Kabul.

"The Turkish embassy is holding intensive talks with Afghan authorities to find out their whereabouts," a foreign ministry diplomat told AFP. He said there was no information about their well-being.

Taliban insurgents seized eight Turks and an Afghan from a civilian helicopter which made an emergency landing in bad weather in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday, officials said.

An Afghan local official who declined to be identified said tribal chiefs are also trying to secure the captives' return.

Turkey, one of only two Muslim-majority members of NATO, has around 1,800 soldiers serving with the US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, but their mission is limited to patrols and troops do not take part in combat operations.

 

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