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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Hostage Talks Sought

MOSCOW -- Officials and religious figures of the republic of Tatarstan left for the United Arab Emirates Friday to try to meet members of an Afghan opposition group who have seized a Tatar airliner and are holding its crew hostage, Interfax reported the head of the Tartar parliament as saying.

Vasily Likhachev said the delegation would seek the release of the seven-member crew of an Ilyushin-76 jet owned by the Tatar airline Aerostan, who were taken hostage Aug. 3.

The Taliban group seized the jet, which departed from Tirana, Albania, carrying a cargo of ammunition for the Afghan government, and have demanded the release of some 60,000 Afghans they say are interned on the territory of the former Soviet Union.