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Afghan gov't releases 100 Taliban prisoners

ISLAMABAD, April 8 (KUNA) -- The Afghan government on Wednesday announced the release of 100 prisoners belonging to Taliban rebel group as part of the peace deal signed between United States and Taliban in Qatar in February.
A spokesperson for Afghanistan's Office of the National Security Council Javid Faisal in a statement said, "Pursuant to President Ghani's decree of March 11, the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan released 100 Taliban prisoners based on their health condition, age and length of remaining sentence as part of our efforts for peace and containment of COVID-19." The prisoners were on the broader list that the Taliban technical team shared and discussed during meetings with the technical team of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Kabul, he noted.
"The National Directorate of Security and the Attorney General's Office thoroughly vetted the prisoners, who have taken an oath never to return to the battlefield. The Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan has received the same assurance from the group's leadership in Doha," said the spokesperson.
The release comes a day after Taliban had accused the Afghan government of delaying the prisoner swap that was part of the peace agreement signed in Doha.
According to the agreement, Afghan government has to release 5,000 Taliban prisoners to pursue intra-Afghan dialogues.
Earlier, a three-member delegation from the Taliban arrived in Kabul to discuss the prisoner release. (end) sbk.gb