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Female Australian aid worker reportedly kidnapped by armed men in Afghanistan

An Australian woman has reportedly been kidnapped by armed men in Afghanistan.

The aid worker was taken from her office by the men in the early hours of the morning in the eastern city of Jalalabad, in the capital of the Nangarhar province, Attaullah Khogyanai, spokesman of the state’s governor told Spanish news agency EFE.

The kidnappers wore military uniforms and the employee “worked in the non-profit’s handicrafts department”, he said.

A security source, requesting anonymity, said police have detained eight suspects, and the kidnapped woman had not requested protection.

The abduction of the woman, who worked for Danish Committee for Aid to Afghan Refugees (DACAAR), a developmental aid organization working in Afghanistan since 1984, is yet to be claimed by any group.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade late on Thursday said in a statement that “the Australian Government is working to confirm the reported kidnapping of an Australian in Afghanistan”.

In February, five Afghan employees of the International Committee of the Red Cross were abducted by unidentified armed assailants in southeastern Afghanistan but freed four days later.

Kidnappings, especially for ransom, are a common occurrence in the country, and frequently target employees of humanitarian organizations.

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