Afghan Govt, Taliban to Meet and Discuss Prisoner Releases

Taliban experts first releases by the end of the month

Afghan and Taliban officials have met once again via video conference, and scheduled a face-to-face meeting in the next few days to discuss the prisoner release that is holding up intra-Afghan talks.

Under the US-Taliban peace deal, the Afghan government was to release 5,000 prisoners, but the US never got the Afghans to agree to that, so no prisoners have been released yet. This is stalling everything else on power-sharing internally.

The Taliban expressed confidence that prisoners would be released by the end of the month, and Afghan officials have reportedly planned 100 Taliban prisoners’ release on humanitarian grounds. This would be a good first step toward getting things back to normal.

The Taliban have refused to hold direct negotiations on post-war relations until they get their whole 5,000 prisoners released, and while that might take awhile, every little bit is a confidence-builder that this is going to ultimately happen.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.