Japan is urging Afghanistan's ruling Taleban to release a Japanese man who was arrested Monday on suspicion of spying.
A government spokesman says Tokyo is still trying to confirm the identity of the Japanese national and is asking the Taleban to free him as soon as possible.
The Afghan Islamic Press says the Taleban has identified the man as Daigen Yanagida of Tokyo. The man is reported to have told Taleban officials that he is a writer gathering information for a book.
He is being held in the city of Jalalabad while authorities conduct an investigation.
Under Taleban law, the man could face the death penalty if found guilty of spying.