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April 19, 2014

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Afghan Taliban say they captured NATO military dog

Updated Friday, Feb. 7, 2014 | 4:33 a.m.

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Taliban said Friday that they have captured a military dog belonging to NATO forces in Afghanistan, releasing a video of the canine wearing a high-tech harness.

Insurgent spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said Friday that the dog was captured during a battle about a month ago in Laghman province, east of the capital, Kabul.

The insurgents sent by email a video showing a brown dog held on a leash by an armed Taliban fighter. It wore a black harness mounted with what the Taliban said was a video camera, and a voiceover said the dog was being called "Colonel."

Mujahid said by telephone that the dog is being held in a "safe place" in Laghman. "The condition of the dog is OK — he was not injured and is not being mistreated," he said.

The NATO-led coalition in Afghanistan confirmed Friday that one of its military dogs went missing during a mission in December. It gave no other details.

Military service dogs are used to sniff out bombs and are also used in special forces raids as protection and to help subdue suspects. Bringing dogs into homes during raids is controversial in Afghanistan because dogs are considered unclean by many Muslims.