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American reportedly being held hostage by al-Qaida affiliate

| Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2015, 8:04 p.m.

WASHINGTON — An American civilian is being held by a Taliban-linked terrorist group in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, according to a United States official familiar with the matter.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he isn't authorized to discuss the situation, said the man is being held by the Haqqani network. The family-run terror group operates along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

The official would not discuss the man's identity or the circumstances of his capture. The incident was first reported Wednesday by the Daily Beast website.

The FBI, the White House and the man's wife have urged public officials and media organizations not to discuss the matter publicly, the official said.

The State Department is “aware of reports that an American is being held,” spokesman Mark Toner said. “We reiterate our calls for U.S. citizens being held hostage around the world to be released.”

Meanwhile, Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour was seriously wounded in Pakistan in a shootout between senior members of the Islamist movement, Taliban sources said Wednesday.

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