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Freed Hostages To Leave Afghanistan Soon

Two South Korean women are escorted after being released by the Taliban on August 13 (AFP) August 14, 2007 -- Two South Korean women freed by the Taliban are reportedly in good condition and undergoing medical checks in Afghanistan today.

South Korea's Embassy in Kabul said they would return to Seoul "very soon."

The two women were among 23 South Korean Christian aid workers abducted by the Taliban on July 19.

A Taliban spokesman, Qari Yusof Ahmadi, said the two had been released as a "goodwill gesture."

The militia group has since killed two male hostages.

It is demanding the release of Taliban prisoners. The Afghan government rejects that demand.

The Taliban and South Korean diplomats are reportedly continuing negotiations by telephone over the fate of the 19 remaining hostages.

The International Committee of the Red Cross says no new face-to-face talks have been planned.

(compiled from agency reports)

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