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Afghan spy agency says 8 kidnapped members of Hazara ethnic minority freed

  • In this Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015 photo, Mullah Mohammed Rasool, the newly-elected leader of a breakaway faction of the Taliban, speaks during a gathering in Farah province, Afghanistan. (AP Photo)

    In this Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015 photo, Mullah Mohammed Rasool, the newly-elected leader of a breakaway faction of the Taliban, speaks during a gathering in Farah province, Afghanistan. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015 photo, Afghan Taliban fighters listen to Mullah Mohammed Rasool, unseen, the newly-elected leader of a breakaway faction of the Taliban, in Farah province, Afghanistan. (AP Photo)

    In this Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015 photo, Afghan Taliban fighters listen to Mullah Mohammed Rasool, unseen, the newly-elected leader of a breakaway faction of the Taliban, in Farah province, Afghanistan. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

  • Afghan men carry the coffin of seven bodies from an ethnic Shiite minority, killed by the Islamic State group, in Ghazni province eastern Afghanistan, Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015. Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani on Monday condemned the gruesome slayings of seven members of an ethnic Shiite minority abducted in a southeastern province where rival Taliban factions are fighting one another. The headless bodies of four men, two women and a child — all members of the Hazara minority — were found late on Saturday in the Arghandab district of Zabul province, which borders Pakistan. (AP Photo/Rahmatullah Nikzad)

    Afghan men carry the coffin of seven bodies from an ethnic Shiite minority, killed by the Islamic State group, in Ghazni province eastern Afghanistan, Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015. Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani on Monday condemned the gruesome slayings of seven members of an ethnic Shiite minority abducted in a southeastern province where rival Taliban factions are fighting one another. The headless bodies of four men, two women and a child — all members of the Hazara minority — were found late on Saturday in the Arghandab district of Zabul province, which borders Pakistan. (AP Photo/Rahmatullah Nikzad)  (The Associated Press)

Afghanistan's spy agency says it has freed eight people who were among a large group of ethnic minority Hazaras kidnapped earlier this year.

The National Directorate of Security said in a statement that five men, two women and a teenager were freed in Ghazni province on Tuesday.

It was not clear if they were among 31 Hazaras abducted from a bus in Ghazni in March, all of whom were believed to be men.

Senior government officials have said that the Islamic State group was behind the abductions. The NDS statement made no comment on who was responsible.

The bodies of seven Hazaras were found in neighboring Zabul province on Saturday, officials said. Rival Taliban factions have been fighting in the region for days.