"Their condition is fairly good," he said. "It was a secret operation, nobody knew about it, including their relatives."
He said that freeing the pilots was only possible "with the help of Russian leadership."
The Mi-17 helicopter, with a crew of three and 18 passengers, was providing airlift support for the Afghan army when it was hit on November 24, 2015. The company operating the aircraft at the time said that the passengers were Afghan army personnel.
The Afghan defence ministry said at the time two Afghans were also killed, while the rest of the crew and passengers were taken hostage.
Moldova's parliament speaker Andrian Candu on Monday claimed the pilots were actually freed three months ago and were held in Moscow to score points for pro-Russian Dodon before parliamentary polls on February 24.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova confirmed that Moscow "took active measures to free the Moldovan pilots over the course of several years."
"Now they are free," she told AFP, without specifying when they were released or confirming any negotiations with the Taliban.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)