Report: 3 former U.S. soldiers, one from Ayden, detained in South Sudan

FILE-- In this file photo of Friday, Sept. 25, 2015. South Sudan government soldiers in the town of Koch, Unity state, South Sudan. Fifty-two soldiers and rebels have been killed in recent fighting in South Sudan’s contested state of Unity, a military official Saturday, blaming rebels for the latest violation of a peace deal signed last month amid high hopes for peace. ((AP Photo/Jason Patinkin-file)

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) –  Multiple publications are reporting that three former U.S. soldiers, including one from Ayden, have been detained in South Sudan.

The Army Times reports the three men were detained earlier this week while crossing the South Sudan Border. They report that William Wright-Martinovich, Craig Austin Lang and Alex Jared Zweifelholfer are still in custody.

Lang is reportedly from the Ayden area.

Lt. Col. Joe Buccino with 82nd Airborne Division out of Fort Bragg confirmed to WNCT that he was aware of what was going on. Buccino said they were notified of the situation on Wednesday by U.S. officials.

He said he could confirm Zweifelholfer had served in the 82nd Airborne Division until October 2016, when he was dropped from rolls due to an unauthorized absence.

9 On Your Side contacted the U.S. State Department. In statement from the press office, a spokesman said ” The Department of State takes its obligation to assist U.S. citizens overseas seriously.   Due to privacy considerations, we have not further comment.”

We will update this article as new information becomes available.

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