HERAT, Afghanistan (AFP) - Twelve Iranian engineers kidnapped in western Afghanistan have been released along with three Afghan colleagues, police and officials in the two countries said on Wednesday. The men, who were working on a road construction project, were snatched at gunpoint on Monday in the Post-i-Road district of Farah province, which borders Iran. "All the 12 hostages were released at around 5:00 pm (1230 GMT) today. They were released with the help of local elders who acted as mediators," said Farah police chief Sayed Mohammad Roshandel. "They are in a safe place in Farah." He later added that three Afghans who were kidnapped alongside them had also been freed. Officials had previously indicated that five Afghans were abducted but Roshandel said there were only three. Iran's state news agency IRNA also quoted the foreign ministry in Tehran confirming the news.