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AFGHANISTAN AID - 2001-08-25


Afghanistan's ruling Taleban says it will allow diplomats and other visitors to see eight foreign aid workers detained in Kabul for allegedly preaching Christianity.

Taleban officials say diplomats and relatives may meet with the aid workers for the German-based Shelter Now Agency. The Taleban had not allowed visitors to see the aid workers since their arrest three weeks ago.

The Red Cross says it is meeting with Taleban officials to discuss the modalities of visiting the aid workers -- two Americans, four Germans, and two Australians.

Three U-S, German, and Australian diplomats returned to Pakistan earlier this week after spending a week in Afghanistan in an attempt to see the workers. However, the Taleban at that time refused them permission to visit.

The Taleban practices a harsh fundamentalist brand of Islam that makes it illegal to convert an Afghan Muslim to Christianity.

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