korean hostages 224 88.
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Afghan police have killed three Taliban commanders allegedly involved in the abduction of the 23 South Koreans, the Interior Ministry said Saturday.
The Interior Ministry said the police operation took place Friday in the Qarabagh district of Ghazni province, where the insurgents seized 23 South Koreans on July 19.
"The commanders who were killed during this operation were directly involved in the kidnapping case of the Korean hostages," the ministry said in a statement. It did not provide any further details or the identities of the slain Taliban.
Ghazni has seen several military operations since the captives' release Aug. 29 and Aug. 30, possibly reflecting a desire by the Afghan government to assert its authority on the rebellious region following the abductions.
Another Taliban commander behind the kidnapping of South Korean church workers, Mullah Mateen, was killed in an operation early this month.
Two of the Korean hostages were slain soon after the kidnapping. Two women were released later during the Taliban's negotiations with South Korea, and the remaining 19 were freed after Seoul repeated a long-standing commitment to withdraw its 200 soldiers here by year's end and prevent Christian missionaries from traveling to Afghanistan.
In other violence Friday, at least eight suspected Taliban were killed in separate Afghan army operations in Helmand province, while two Afghan soldiers lost their lives in insurgent violence in western Farah province, the Defense Ministry said.
More than 4,300 people - mostly militants - have died in insurgency-related violence this year, according to an Associated Press tally of figures from Western and Afghan officials.
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