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Taliban frees 732 govt. inmates

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KABUL: The Taliban group claimed that they have released 732 members of the Afghan security forces since the start of the prisoner swap process to facilitate the intra-Afghan talks.

Suhail Shaheen, the Taliban Qatar based political office’s spokesman said the group had released 20 Afghan security forces last Sunday in northern Baghlan province.

But the Afghan government had earlier said that many of the prisoners released by Taliban, are civilians and that tens of the Afghan security forces taken hostage by the Taliban have gone missing.

But the Taliban denied the allegation, saying that the government submitted an erroneous list of its prisoners to militant technical team, which was working on the prisoner swap process with the government’s team.

The prisoners release has once hit walls after the Taliban insist on release of some of their notorious members, who had been behind major attacks in Afghanistan.

The US and Taliban signed a preliminary peace deal on February 29th that started the withdrawal of roughly 12,000 American soldiers from Afghanistan. Based on the agreement the Afghan government should release 5,000 Taliban inmates in return for the 1,000 Afghan security forces.

Presidential Place Spokesman, Sediq Sediqqi said that over 3,895 Taliban prisoners have been freed and that the process would be continuing.

The NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg said that it is too soon to decide troop withdrawal from Afghanistan unless the situation is laid out for stability in the country.

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