US and Australian professors kidnapped in Afghanistan

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A car passes American University of Afghanistan in Kabul, Afghanistan, Monday, Aug. 8, 2016Image source, AP
Image caption,
The two men were employees of the American University of Afghanistan (pictured)

Two foreign professors, one from the US and one from Australia, have been kidnapped in the Afghan capital Kabul, officials have told the BBC.

The two men worked for the American University of Afghanistan, and were on their way to their guesthouse when gunmen attacked their vehicle.

Afghanistan is in the grip of an ongoing insurgency by the Taliban Islamist militant group.

Several foreigners have been kidnapped in recent times.

Gunmen wearing uniforms of the Afghan security forces had smashed the vehicle used by the professors, and forced them out of the car, reports said.

The two men were abducted early on Sunday evening.

Australia's foreign ministry said it was seeking to "verify reports of the kidnapping".

"We continue to advise Australians not to travel to Afghanistan because of the extremely dangerous security situation," it said in a statement.

Meanwhile, the US state department said it was aware of reports that a US citizen had been seized, but did not comment further.

Several foreigners have been attacked or kidnapped in Afghanistan this year.

  • Last year, two German aid workers employed by the development organisation GIZ were kidnapped in separate incidents in Afghanistan. Both were eventually freed.

Earlier this week, militants attacked a convoy of a dozen foreign tourists in the western city of Herat, injuring six of them and their Afghan driver.

The tourists comprised eight Britons, three US citizens and one German.

A spokesman for the Taliban militant group said it had carried out the attack.