Source AP ©

Two German citizens kidnapped in central Afghanistan

Germany's foreign ministry confirmed Thursday that two of its citizens have been kidnapped while working in central Afghanistan.

"Based on the information we have at this time, we believe this is a kidnapping," Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Jaeger told reporters. He said a crisis team had been set up in Berlin and the embassy in Kabul was also involved in efforts to solve the case.

Afghan police had said Wednesday that the Germans, along with two Afghans were seized in Wardak province's Jaghatu district.

Jaeger said the Germans were employees of a company based in Kabul, but declined to give any further details.

"Since yesterday we have of course been able to gather information and draw up a picture of the situation on the ground," Jaeger said. He did not elaborate.

Another German man was kidnapped in western Afghanistan on June 28, but was released a week later, after the kidnappers - using tribal elders as intermediaries - demanded US$40,000 (Ђ30,000) for freeing them. It was not clear whether money changed hands.

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