U.S. secretly releases high-level prisoners to buy peace with Taliban

   May 7, 4:34 pm

Kabul, May 7 (ANI): As part of an effort to quell violence and ensure peace with the Taliban, the United States for several years has been secretly releasing high-level prisoners from a military prison in Afghanistan.

According to the peace deal, insurgent commanders or local elders have promised to reduce violence, or cease fighting altogether, if certain insurgents are released from Parwan, The Washington Post reports.

However, the deal is a gamble as the freed detainees are generally notorious fighters who would not have been released under the legal system for military prisoners in Afghanistan.

U.S. officials have asked these prisoners to promise to give up violence, and if they are caught attacking American troops, they will be detained once again.

However, officials have not said that those who have been released under the program have later returned to attack U.S. and Afghan forces again.

The insurgents released through the secret program are the only detainees at Parwan who are able to circumvent the prison's judicial review board.

The releases have come amid efforts to end the decade-long war through negotiation, which is a central feature of the Obama administration's strategy for leaving Afghanistan.

Those efforts, however, have yielded little to no progress in recent years. In part, they have been stymied by the unwillingness of the United States to release five prisoners from Guantanamo Bay, a gesture that insurgent leaders say they see as a precondition for peace talks.

Although US negotiations with top insurgent leaders are seen as an end to war, which has claimed nearly 2,000 U.S. lives; the release program is seen to quell violence in areas where NATO has failed to ensure security, particularly as troops continue to withdraw.

However, U.S. officials have not commented on the number of detainees released under the program and for how long has the program existed for. (ANI)

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