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400 Taliban prisoners on many blacklists, says Sidiqi

400 Taliban prisoners on many blacklists, says Sidiqi

Aug 03, 2020 - 17:03


KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): A grand assembly will be convened to decide the fate of the remaining 400 Talibaninfo-icon prisoners because they are on blacklists of Afghanistaninfo-icon and some other countries, an official said on Monday.

Under the Feb. 29 peace agreement between the United States and the Taliban, the Afghan government has to free 5,000 Taliban inmates and in return, the militant movement released 1,000 government soldiers.

According to the National Security Council (NSC), the government has released 317 more Taliban militants in the past two days, taking the total number to 4,914.

The Taliban say they have released 1,000 government prisoners and completed the prisoners releasing process.

Ghani says his government has no power under the Constitution to free the 400 Taliban prisoners involved in serious crimes. As a result, the president wants to seek advice from a Loya Jirgainfo-icon.

On the first day of the Eid festival, President Ashraf Ghani suggested convening the Loya Jirga to decide the fate of the 400 prisoners on a Taliban list handed to his administration.

Sidiq Sidiqi, a presidential spokesman, told a press conference here on Monday that a committee had been formed to convene the Loya Jirga and more details would be shared with the nation tomorrow (Tuesday).

Sidiqi said the State Ministry for Peace Affairs and the National Reconciliation Council were working fast to convene the jirgainfo-icon on August 7.

According to Sidiqi, the president has directed less spending on the Loya Jirga and adopting healthcare measures.

The spokesman said President Ghani had no authority under the constitution to release the 400 Taliban prisoners because they had been convicted in serious crimes, including murders, smuggling of drugs and kidnapping.

Responding to a query, he said: “These prisoners are not only in the black list of Afghanistan but of other countries as well and like other major issues, the government is convening a Loya Jirga to decide the fate of the 400 Taliban prisoners.”

The government also wanted to share all details and risks of the peace process with the nation during the assembly, he concluded.

Meanwhile, a source speaking on the condition of anonymity, told Pajhwok the Loya Jirga would last 3-5 days to discuss the release of prisoners, ceasefire extension, intra-Afghan talks and other issues.



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