CAMP EDWARDS (CBS/AP) – The three Afghanistan National Army officers who went missing during a training exercise at a Cape Cod military base on Saturday were located Monday afternoon near the Canadian border.
Just after 1 p.m., WBZ-TV’s Lauren Leamanczyk reported that the three soldiers were taken into custody attempting to cross the Canadian border. They were transferred to U.S. custody Monday night.
Massachusetts state police were notified Monday morning that the three were being questioned by federal authorities at Rainbow Bridge, which connects Niagara Falls, N.Y., and Niagara Falls, Ontario, said spokesman David Procopio, who did not have further details.
U.S. military officials said the Afghan soldiers had been participating in a U.S. Central Command Regional Cooperation training exercise in peacekeeping at Joint Base Cape Cod. They arrived at Camp Edwards on Sept. 11 and were last seen Saturday at the Cape Cod Mall in Hyannis, an off day for the program.
The soldiers were reporting missing by base security personnel on Saturday night. They were identified as Maj. Jan Mohammad Arash, Capt. Mohammad Nasir Askarzada and Capt. Noorullah Aminyar.
The State Department, Central Command, Massachusetts State Police and local police were involved in the search for the soldiers.
The soldiers, who are in the country on visas, were at the mall at a chaperoned event to introduce them to American culture, according to a CentCom official, when they disappeared.
Pentagon officials told CBS News the officers were not required to surrender their passports, so they could still have them. Local law enforcement officials were given photos of the soldiers.
Procopio said state police considered the soldiers disappearance to be a missing persons case, because there was no information that any crimes had been committed.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports