05:48 GMT01 August 2021
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): The Afghanistan government and the Taliban signed a US-mediated peace pact in February. As part of the agreement both sides agreed to release prisoners – the government would release 5,000 Taliban and the armed group would release 1,000 pro-government captives.

    A spokesman for the Afghanistan National Security Council Javid Faisal said on Monday, that the government will not release more Taliban prisoners until the group reciprocates with the release of 200 more pro-government captives, TOLO News reported.  

    So far the government has released 1,000 Taliban prisoners, while the Taliban has released 105 members of the security force.

    On Saturday (9 May) Faisal said it was now the Taliban’s turn to accelerate the release of prisoners, stop killing Afghanis and start face-to-face talks soon.  He added that the government had released prisoners to fight COVID-19 and advance peace. “Delays are no longer justifiable,” he added.

    The US-brokered peace deal signed on 29 February pledged the gradual withdrawal of foreign troops from the war-torn country in exchange for security guarantees from the armed group.  The swap deal of prisoners was part of the agreement.



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