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Two of three British men being held hostage by the Taliban have been allowed to make a telephone call to their families back home in the United Kingdom.
The news was confirmed by the British government on Tuesday, who said that the two men had been able to make contact with their families.
The men, identified as Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh, were part of a group of four British nationals known as the “Beatles” who had been captured by the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2012.
The men, who were part of a group of Islamic State (IS) militants, are believed to have been involved in the kidnappings and beheadings of western hostages.
The two men were moved to the US-run Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba last October, but have since been moved to an undisclosed location.
The call marks a rare moment of contact with their families since their imprisonment and is seen as a sign of progress in diplomatic talks between the US and the Taliban.
It is not clear what was discussed during the call, but it is understood that the families were relieved to be able to speak to the men after such a long time apart.
The third member of the “Beatles” group, Aine Davis, is still in captivity, although his whereabouts are unknown.
The British government has said that it is still committed to securing their release and will continue to work with the US and other partners to do so.