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Rescue operation kicked off to save abducted passengers in Zabul

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AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: Security forces have launched a rescue operation in southern Zabul province on Monday night to free the 30 passengers (ethnically Hazaras) who were abducted by unknown armed men more than one week back, said reports on Tuesday.

TOLO News quoted a number of sources as saying that the operation was launched in Khak-e-Afghan district where 36 militants have been killed and 50 others injured.

The source also said that the operation was led by Kandahar police chief, General Abdul Raziq; Military Commander of Atal 205th Corps Maj. Gen. Abdul Hamid Hamid; and Zabul security officials.

The operation comes as struggles of tribal elders to talk with abductors for releasing the 30 abducted men were failed.

Ahead of the operation, the acting governor of Zabul, Mohammad Ashraf Nasiri, warned that they would come up with military option if the negotiations between tribal elders and the armed men yielded no result.

The acting governor recently blamed local Taliban, the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Jhangvi militants and Chechens for abducting the passengers. But, the provincial council office in Zabul recently told Radio Azadi that the abductors have links to the international terrorist outfit—ISIS or Daesh.

It is said that the local tribal elders sought the Taliban’s help to find the location of abducted men but these struggles were failed and finally the security forces kicked off the rescue operation there.