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Sixty-five escaped prisoners recaptured in Kandahar

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Reuters/Ahmad Nadeem

Provincial authorities in Afghanistan's Kandahar state say they have recaptured 65 prisoners out of the 500 who escaped in an audacious Taliban-led jailbreak overnight Sunday.


The prisoners fled through a kilometre-long tunnel that the Taliban claim took them five months to dig into the prison in Kandahar city.

A massive manhunt was launched after the escape which was the second from the prison in three years and was said to include more than 100 rebel commanders.

Dossier: AfPak news and analysis

The breakout threates to undermine recent gains by Nato forces in the area after a US-led troop surge. It is also a major embarrassment for Afghan forces who are due to take a greater responsiblity for security ahead of the planned withdrawal of foreign combat troops in 2014.

Meanwhile, Nato troops say they have killed a Saudi man believed to be the number two most-wanted Al-Qaeda senior leader in Afghanistan.

The US-led International Security Assistance Force, Isaf, said Abu Hafs al-Najdi, also known as Abdul Ghani, was killed in an air strike in Kunar province, eastern Afghanistan on 13 April.

The Saudi interrior ministry lists the man as one of its 85 most-wanted.