Taliban: We Kidnapped 50 Afghan Cops
Ambush new grads traveling in Kunar province
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 27, 2011 9:13 AM CDT
An Afghan police man looks through his binoculars during a search operation east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2008.   (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul)
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(Newser) – The Taliban claimed today that it kidnapped 50 Afghan policemen in northeastern Afghanistan—part of the insurgents' murder and intimidation campaign against anyone affiliated with the US-backed government. Militants ambushed the policemen yesterday afternoon after being tipped off that they would be traveling in Kunar province, a Taliban spokesman said. The policemen from Nuristan province had just finished their training to join the Afghan National Police, he said.

Kunar's provincial police chief confirmed that militants stopped four vehicles in Chapa Dara district and captured several dozen men. He did not know the exact number and said it was unclear whether all were members of the Afghan National Police or prospective recruits. In the past, the Taliban have apprehended other policemen in Nuristan and other parts of the country, but then released them if they promised not to work with the police or the Afghan government, said the Taliban spokesman. This time, top Taliban military commanders will decide the policemen's fate after assessing the situation on the ground, he said.