Pakistanis’ release: US asked for explanation
KABUL (Pajhwok): The Afghan government on Saturday asked the United States for an explanation regarding the release of Pakistani prisoners from the Bagram jail in central Parwan province.
On Friday, some media outlets reported the US military had set free nine Pakistani inmates from the Bagram prison. Fifteen more Pakistanis are still in foreign forces’ custody.
Pakistani prisoners were reportedly handed over to the International Committee for the Red Cross (ICRC) to help them reunite with their families.
In an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, Presidential spokesman Aimal Faizi confirmed seeking an explanation from the US in connection with the recently released Pakistani prisoners.
It was mandatory for the US military to disclose where the Pakistanis had been arrested and why they were released, he said. It should also be made clear who had investigated their cases, the official said.
How the US would guarantee the released men would neither return to the battlefield nor fight against Afghanistan in the future, Faizi asked.
The Afghan government raises its concerns at a time when security has deteriorated across the country. Most of previously freed detainees have rejoined militants.
The government took charge of the Bagram in 2013 from foreign forces but the latter kept overseeing foreign prisoners.
Faizi acknowledged insecurity had spilled into more areas. Foreign intelligence agencies, including the Pakistani spy network, were striving to fuel instability in the country, he alleged.
But he said Afghan security forces were strong and professional enough to ward off any threat. “Our brave soldiers render great sacrifices daily to protect their motherland, demonstrating their loyalty to the country,” he remarked.
Asked about the release, a spokesperson for the US Defense Press Operations said: "The Defense Department confirms nine detainees were repatriated to Pakistan from US custody in Afghanistan.”
Lt. Col. Myles B. Caggins III said the detainees, who met the US criteria for internment under the Law of Armed Conflict, were transferred to Pakistani custody with appropriate security assurances, including a criminal investigation.
They received periodic administrative status reviews at least twice a year in accordance with US Department of Defense procedures. “We conduct a thorough case-by-case review to ensure every detainee is safely and humanely transferred in compliance with US law and applicable international standards.”
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