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DUSHANBE -- Police in Tajikistan have found two underground madrasahs near Dushanbe.

An adviser to Tajikistan's Interior Ministry, Jumanazar Rahmatov, told RFE/RL on June 17 that the unregistered Islamic religious schools had been discovered close to the capital after investigators interrogated the alleged kidnapper of a five-year-old boy last week.

Rahmatov denied earlier reports in the Russian media saying that some of the children found in the madrasahs had been abducted.

According to Rahmatov, the children in the madrasahs were studying with the consent of their parents.

Russian media reports had said some of the children might have been kidnapped and forced to study in the schools.
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