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US-Led Forces Capture 2 Suspected al-Qaida Militants in Eastern Afghanistan

U.S.-led coalition forces in Afghanistan say they have captured two suspected al-Qaida militants in the east of the country.

A military statement says coalition forces caught the two Afghan men in a raid this Wednesday morning in the eastern province of Nangarhar, near the border with Pakistan.

The statement says coalition forces were acting on intelligence about an al-Qaida member known to pass messages for senior leaders of the group. It says the two detained militants are being questioned on their alleged links to al-Qaida.

NATO defense ministers are to meet in southern Spain Thursday to discuss their military strategy in Afghanistan, where Taleban insurgents are threatening a spring offensive in the coming months.

During the informal talks in Seville, U.S. General Bantz Craddock is expected to press NATO members to fulfill their commitment to send more troops and resources to the war-torn country.

In another development, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has asked Congress for more than $10 billion to help strengthen Afghanistan's security forces.

Attacks by Taleban militants on NATO, U.S. and Afghan forces increased dramatically last year. More than 4,000 people have died in the violence.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.