U.S. Military: Afghanistan Releasing 65 ‘Dangerous Insurgents’ Against Our Wishes

Some of the soon-to-be-freed prisoners have killed or wounded U.S. soldiers, the military says.

Army soldiers carry an injured soldier who was shot in the leg, through a poppy field on April 24, 2011 in the Arghandab River Valley, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan.
National Journal
Feb. 12, 2014, 8:52 a.m.

The U.S. mil­it­ary con­demned the Afghan gov­ern­ment for over­rid­ing its ob­jec­tions and mov­ing for­ward with plans to free 65 de­tain­ees it be­lieves are dan­ger­ous and pose a ser­i­ous threat to the lives of co­ali­tion and loc­al Afghan troops.

De­tain­ees from this group of 65, cur­rently be­ing held at an Afghan de­ten­tion fa­cil­ity in Par­wan, are ex­pec­ted to be re­leased Thursday, the U.S. mil­it­ary in Afgh­anistan said in a state­ment.

Some of these de­tain­ees, the mil­it­ary said, are dir­ectly linked to at­tacks that have killed or wounded U.S. or co­ali­tion per­son­nel, Afghan se­cur­ity per­son­nel, or loc­al ci­vil­ians, and are con­sidered quite dan­ger­ous. One is a sus­pec­ted Taliban ex­plos­ives ex­pert; an­oth­er is a com­mand­er from the Haqqani net­work who is ac­cused of plan­ning at­tacks. “It re­mains the po­s­i­tion of [the U.S. mil­it­ary] that vi­ol­ent crim­in­als who harm Afghans and threaten the peace and se­cur­ity of Afgh­anistan should face justice in the Afghan courts, where a fair and trans­par­ent tri­al would de­term­ine their guilt or in­no­cence,” the mil­it­ary’s state­ment said.

The U.S. mil­it­ary says it provided, on sev­er­al oc­ca­sions, ex­tens­ive in­form­a­tion and evid­ence on each de­tain­ee to Afgh­anistan’s re­view board — which has pre­vi­ously said there was not enough evid­ence against a total group of 88 de­tain­ees to con­tin­ue hold­ing them. In a sep­ar­ate state­ment Tues­day, the U.S. mil­it­ary said the im­pend­ing re­lease would vi­ol­ate agree­ments between the two coun­tries — and that the evid­ence against these de­tain­ees “was nev­er ser­i­ously con­sidered, in­clud­ing by the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al.” Free­ing these de­tain­ees, the mil­it­ary said, “is a ma­jor step back­ward for the rule of law in Afgh­anistan.”

The de­fi­ance of Wash­ing­ton on this is­sue is yet an­oth­er sign of ten­sions between the two coun­tries, since Afghan Pres­id­ent Ham­id Kar­zai backed away from sign­ing a se­cur­ity pact with the U.S. late last year that would clear the way to leave a con­tin­gent of U.S. troops in the coun­try past the 2014 dead­line for the con­clu­sion of com­bat op­er­a­tions.

Na­tion­al In­tel­li­gence Dir­ect­or James Clap­per told the Sen­ate on Tues­day he does not be­lieve Kar­zai is not go­ing to sign that pact. In­stead, it ap­pears the U.S. is go­ing to wait for his suc­cessor to be elec­ted in the spring. The com­ments came as news broke that the U.S. mil­it­ary is re­vis­ing its plans to with­draw troops from Afgh­anistan un­til after Kar­zai leaves of­fice — a re­flec­tion of a need to be prag­mat­ic as hopes wane to fi­nal­ize an agree­ment.

What We're Following See More »
RARE STATEMENT FROM SPECIAL COUNSEL'S OFFICE
Mueller Denies BuzzFeed Report About Trump Directing Cohen to Lie
6 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s office on Friday denied an explosive report by BuzzFeed News that his investigators had gathered evidence showing President Trump directed his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, to lie to Congress about a prospective business deal in Moscow. 'BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the special counsel’s office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s congressional testimony are not accurate,' said Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller."

Source:
SAYS NO REASON TO WORRY
Sen. Angus King Says He's Undergoing Prostate Cancer Treatment
9 hours ago
THE DETAILS
ABOUT THE BORDER
Trump to Make Announcement Saturday Afternoon
9 hours ago
THE LATEST
MORE PRESSURE ON WHITE HOUSE
NY Fed Chief Says Shutdown Could Cut Growth by 1%
14 hours ago
THE DETAILS
SCHIFF CALLS ALLEGATIONS THE MOST SERIOUS TO DATE
House Intel Will Probe BuzzFeed Report
17 hours ago
THE LATEST

"The top Democrats on the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees said they will investigate the allegations that President Donald Trump directed his former attorney Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about negotiations in 2016 to build a Trump Tower in Moscow are true, as BuzzFeed News reported late Thursday. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said the allegations underlying the BuzzFeed report are “among the most serious to date” and indicated he will direct committee investigators to probe them."

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login