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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Kyrgyz Talks Fail

ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- A human rights activist who has been serving as a go-between with Islamic militant kidnappers was unsuccessful in his quest to meet with the 13 hostages, a top Kyrgyz security official said Thursday.

Tursunbek Akunov, the go-between, met with the militants in their village stronghold of Zardaly on Monday and returned Tuesday to Batken, where he had a closed-door meeting with Kyrgyz National Guard Commander Abdygul Chotbayev.

The militants invaded from Tajikistan on Aug. 22 and took several hostages - among them four Japanese geologists and a Kyrgyz Interior Ministry commander, General Anarbek Shamkeyev.