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Australian Aid Worker Kidnapped In Afghanistan Released

An Australian aid worker kidnapped in Afghanistan last year has been released, according to an Afghan official and the Australian government.

The woman, whose identity has not been revealed, was kidnapped in Kabul in November.

Mohammad Salim Almas, the head of criminal investigations in Kabul, said the woman was handed over to the Australian Embassy late on March 14.

The Australian department of foreign affairs confirmed her release in a statement on March 15.

Kidnapping are common in Afghanistan, where wealthy Afghans and foreigners are targeted by criminal gangs and militant groups.

Several Australian aid workers have been kidnapped in recent months.

In August, an Australian aid worker, Katherine Jane Wilson, was rescued by Afghan special forces. She was kidnapped in the eastern city of Jalalabad.

Timothy Weekes, an Australian professor at the American University of Afghanistan, remains a hostage after he was captured last August along with an American colleague. They both appeared in a Taliban video in January.

Based on reporting by AFP and dpa