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Iran Says Three Turkish Citizens Kidnapped --> (RFE/RL) 15 January 2006 -- Iran today confirmed that three Turkish citizens have been kidnapped near the country's border with Pakistan.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Assefi said initial information shows the three were taken by the same Sunni extremist group that kidnapped nine Iranian soldiers last month.

He said the information has been given to Turkish authorities.

On 13 January, Turkey announced the three had been abducted in late December near the Iranian city of Zahedan, where the borders of Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan meet. A Turkish Foreign Ministry official said the kidnappers demanded a ransom.

(AP, Reuters)