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Anas, 2 other key Haqqanis still in jail

Anas, 2 other key Haqqanis still in jail

Nov 16, 2019 - 19:01

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The Presidential Palace on Saturday said three key members of the Haqqani networkinfo-icon, including Anas Haqqani, are still in government custody.

President Ashraf Ghani on Tuesday said his decision to free three Haqqani Network prisoners, including Anas Haqqani, Haji Mali Khan and Hafiz Rashid Omari in return for two professors was part of efforts to engage in direct talks with the Talibaninfo-icon and end the country’s decades-old conflict.

American Kevin King and Australian Timothy Weeks were in a critical condition, he added. Both were abducted outside the American University of Afghanistan, in Kabul, where they were lecturers.

Ghani described his decision to release the three Taliban prisoners as “hard but necessary,” and said he hoped the move would deter “intensified attacks.”

One of the three Taliban prisoners set to be released is Anas Haqqani, son of the founder of the Haqqani network

Some local media reported that the three Taliban prisoners had already been freed in Kabul and were flying to Qatar.

The Afghan government earlier this week said it would “conditionally release” three militants from the Taliban-linked Haqqani network as part of an apparent exchange for Timothy Weekes, 50, and Kevin King, 63, who were kidnapped by the group in Kabul in 2016.

After social media reports that said the three Taliban prisoners had already been freed and were on their way to Qatar, Tolo News reported that the three prisoners were shifted back to the Bagram jail.

But Presidential Palace spokesman Sidiq Sidiqi today wrote on his Facebook page that Haji Mali Khan, Anas Haqqani and Hafiz Rashid Omari were still in the government prison.

Sidiqi assured that an exchange of prisoners would take place based on the country national interest.



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