Number of kidnappings on the rise in Afghanistan
The number of abductions has risen dramatically in Afghanistan, a confidential paper by the Interior Ministry said.
In the first six months of 2008, 175 people were abducted in Afghanistan, compared with 96 in the same period the previous year, the paper, which was obtained by Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa, said.
Experts believe the real number of kidnappings is much higher, as many cases are not reported to police out of fear for the victims.
The majority of kidnappings is not perpetrated by the Taliban militants, but by criminal gangs who operate without political motivation.
Main targets are wealthy Afghans, who are held against high sums of ransom.
As a result, an increasing number of foreign investors and well-educated Afghans are reportedly leaving the country.