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US and Taliban swap prisoners

The US and the Taliban regime carried out an change of prisoners on Monday, September 19, between a veteran of the American navy and a key supporter of the Islamist motion detained for seventeen years by the People. The American Mark Frerichs, kidnapped in 2020 in Afghanistan, was exchanged for Bashar Noorzaï, a warlord near the Taliban imprisoned in the US for heroin trafficking. He was warmly welcomed in Kabul.

“After prolonged negotiations, American citizen Mark Frerichs was handed over to an American delegation and that delegation handed over to us [Bashar Noorzaï] at the moment [lundi] at Kabul airport »Afghan International Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi mentioned at a press convention within the capital.

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“Essential help” for the Taliban motion

US President Joe Biden on Monday confirmed the discharge of the US Navy veteran, who was working as a civil engineer on building initiatives in Afghanistan when he was taken hostage, in line with the US State Division . “The profitable negotiations resulting in Mark’s launch required tough choices, which I didn’t take frivolously”defined the American president in a press launch.

On January 31, Mr. Biden had requested the Taliban to launch ” instantly “ Mark Frerichs “earlier than we are able to hope for any consideration of their aspirations to legitimacy”, in regards to the new Afghan authorities, which has not been acknowledged by any nation on the earth. “It isn’t negotiable”he insisted.

Mr. Noorzai, sentenced to life imprisonment in the US for heroin trafficking, held no official place inside the Taliban, authorities spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid advised Agence France-Presse. He however gave them “offered vital help, together with in arms”through the emergence of the Islamist motion within the Nineties, he added.

An in depth collaborator of the late Mullah Omar, founding father of the Taliban, Bashar Noorzai fought the Soviet occupation with the mujahideen forces supported by the US. Throughout his trial, US prosecutors mentioned he was main a “international narcotics community” and that he supported the primary Taliban regime between 1996 and 2001.

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“Supply of Peace”

“If the EIA [« émirat islamique d’Afghanistan »] hadn’t proven his robust dedication, I would not be right here at the momentBashar Noorzai advised reporters when he arrived in Kabul. My launch in change for an American can be a supply of peace between Afghanistan and the People. » His return was celebrated with fanfare by the Taliban regime. Images posted on social media present masked Taliban fighters placing flower necklaces round her neck.

Bashar Noorzai is the second Afghan detainee launched by the US in latest months. In June, Assadullah Haroon was launched after 15 years in Guantanamo jail. Mr. Haroon had languished with out cost for years within the US detention heart in Cuba after he was arrested in 2006 whereas working as a honey dealer between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The discharge of Bashar Noorzai marks the beginning of a “new chapter” in relations between Afghanistan and the US, assured the Afghan International Minister.

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“Main success”

His launch is a “main success” for the Taliban, in line with Hekmatullah Hekmat, an Afghan analyst specializing in safety, interviewed by AFP. “The Taliban can inform their infantry and the Afghans that they’re able to bringing again their nationals detained by opposition teams”additional believes Mr. Hekmat.

In August 2021, the Taliban regained energy after twenty years of occupation of the nation by the US and its NATO allies. The conflict claimed the lives of greater than 2,400 American troopers and greater than 3,500 from different NATO nations, in line with the US army. Tens of 1000’s of Afghans additionally perished.

Regardless of the Taliban’s pleasure in having regained energy, the nation of 38 million individuals is going through one of many worst humanitarian crises on the planet, in line with the United Nations.

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The state of affairs solely bought worse when the disbursements of billions of {dollars} in overseas help, which had supported the Afghan financial system for many years, have been all of a sudden minimize off when the US withdrew. Seven billion {dollars} in reserves have been frozen by Washington.

Additionally, the extreme restrictions imposed by the Taliban on ladies’s rights have turn out to be a significant impediment to official recognition by the worldwide neighborhood of the Islamist authorities in Afghanistan.

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The World with AFP

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