Afghanistan ‘Frees’ Several Taliban Prisoners

Taliban frees three Indian hostages in exchange for release of 11 members

Afghan Taliban officials said that several of the armed group’s members have been freed from Afghan jails. Officials of the Afghan armed group say shadow governors, Sheikh Abdul Rahim and Maulvi Rashid,were among those freed.

However, Afghanistan’s defence department and the president’s office declined to comment.

This is the ¬†first move of its kind since a peace deal that seemed imminent was declared “dead” and just days after a US envoy met top Taliban¬† leaders in the Pakistani capital.

The Taliban have established a shadow government throughout the country; in areas under their control they have even established courts.

The Afghan Taliban also said it has freed three Indian engineers held hostage for over a year in an exchange for securing the release of 11 of its members, including some high-ranking officials of the militant group, according to a media report on Monday.

The prisoner swap happened on Sunday but it did not disclose the location.

Seven Indian engineers working for a power plant in Afghanistan’s northern Baghlan Province were kidnapped in May 2018.

One of the hostages was released in March, but the fate of the others remained unknown.

The identities of the released hostages were not disclosed by the militant group,

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