Taliban kidnap four Albanians, Reportedly Kill Them
Taliban insurgents have abducted four Albanian nationals in southern Afghanistan, a spokesman for the Islamist movement said. The four people, whose identities were not immediately clear, were kidnapped at gunpoint in Maiwand district in the southern province of Kandahar, Qari Mohammad Yousuf, a spokesman, said. "The four Albanians were travelling in two vehicles when our Mujahideen [holy warriors] kidnapped them," Yousuf said by satellite phone from an undisclosed location
in Pakistan. Yousuf said the fate of the four would be decided by Mulla Mohammad Omar, the Taliban's fugitive unemployed potentate supreme leader.
The Taleban says it has killed four foreigners kidnapped at the weekend in southern Afghanistan. A spokesman for the group, Qari Mohammad Yousuf, said the bodies of three Albanians and a German had been dumped "between Helmand and Kandahar". The authorities have not confirmed the claim. A spokesman for the company which employed the four foreigners says they were all Albanian Muslims.
Four Afghans seized at gunpoint along with the foreigners have been freed.
The Taleban spokesman said the four foreigners had been shot dead. "We will kill any one who is helping the Americans," he told the BBC.
One of the freed Afghans said they had been stopped by a group of 20 men dressed as police as they left Helmand for Kabul on Saturday morning. "They tied our hands and feet and blindfolded us," the man, who did not wish to be named, told the BBC. "They took the Albanians away from us to another location. We heard firing and the Albanians screaming. We couldn't see any thing because our eyes were closed."
Ecolog, the company the men worked for, is a German firm that treats dirty water at US and Afghan army bases. Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman Yousaf Stanizai told the BBC the authorities were investigating the kidnapping.
Posted by: Fred 2006-03-13