KABUL: To bring the Taliban on a table for intra-Afghan negotiations and fulfill the US-Taliban peace deal, the Afghan government has so far released around 1,000 Taliban prisoners, although the prisoners swap was once about to hit road locks, as both sides were seemed argued on release of some of the militant’s notorious commanders. The National Security Council said the prisoners freed based on a decree signed by President Ashraf Ghani to boost up efforts for peace process and avoid pandemic covid-19 outbreak in the prisons.
“The Afghan government has proven its commitment on peace with the release of these prisoners,” said the NSC in a statement. “Now is time for Taliban to accelerate prisoners release, stop killing Afghans and engage in negotiations.”
Reduction of violence and comprehensive ceasefire, NSC said is the demand of Afghans and is considered the main factor of the peace process.
The NSC said that continuation of violence by the Taliban is not helping the peace process but it further jeopardize the process and that unexpected violence by the militants may even sabotage the process as well.
In return for the release of over 1,000 of their prisoners, the militants have thus far released 174 government employees, including civil and military personnel held in their custody.
The Taliban Qatar Based Spokesman, Suhail Shaheen said that they have recently freed 48 prisoners in western Herat province. According to him, the process would be continuing.
Prisoners exchange is part of the US-Taliban peace deal signed on February 29th in the Gulf State of Qatar, Doha.
The Taliban have placed the release of their 5,000 prisoners as a precondition for intra-Afghan talks.