The head of the Fijian army said on Sunday negotiations for the release of 44 soldiers seized by an al Qaida-linked group on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights were being pursued but he worried there had been no word on where his men are being held.

The UN peacekeepers from Fiji were detained by Islamist militants on Thursday, one of several groups attacked in the volatile frontier between Syria and Israel.

The United Nations and Manila said on Sunday all of more than 70 Philippine troops trapped by Islamists in a different area of the frontier were now safe, but it is still not known where the Fijians are being held.

"We still at this stage cannot confirm the exact location of our troops. We are continuing negotiations at all levels," Fijian Army Commander Brigadier General Mosese Tikoitoga told a media conference in Fiji on Sunday.

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