Asadabad (Afghanistan): Suspected militants have kidnapped the Governor of a volatile Afghan district near the border with Pakistan, a senior local official said on Saturday.

Musafir Khan Qayumzai, district Governor of Ghazi Abad, was snatched Friday along with his son and two bodyguards, said Kunar provincial governor Sayed Fazlullah Waahedi.

"When he was en route to his office from home, he was taken out of his car by unidentified men and was taken away," Waahedi said.

He added that local officials have now "taken steps to release the district governor through tribal mediation and negotiation with the Taliban."

The Taliban and other militants frequently kidnap police, soldiers and NGO workers in Afghanistan but it is relatively rare for them to target prominent local politicians.

The Islamist militants are waging a near ten-year long insurgency against President Hamid Karzai's Afghan government, its security forces and foreign troops which support the
administration.

(Agencies)