US proposes house arrest for ‘most dreaded’ Taliban inmates to break deadlock in talks: Report
The United States has reportedly proposed that the Taliban militants deemed dangerous be placed under house arrest following their release from Afghan jails as a solution to the stalemate that has delayed the intra-Afghan peace process.
Citing senior official sources, Reuters reported Friday that Washington proposed that Kabul transfer Taliban prisoners to a facility, which would be under the surveillance of both the Afghan government and the militant group.
According to Press TV, the proposal was presented this week to the Afghan warring sides by top US diplomats, the sources said.
The Afghan government is resisting freeing the final batch of some 5,000 prisoners whose release is demanded by the Taliban as a condition to start peace talks.
Of the 400 Taliban prisoners left to be freed, over half stand accused of serious crimes, including killing thousands of civilians and planning attacks against foreign missions and government offices across the country.
Along with Kabul, the US and its Western allies believe a number of the militants are too dangerous to walk free.
“The Americans and their allies agree that it would be insane to let some of the most dreaded Taliban fighters walk out freely...the Afghan forces arrested them for conducting some of the most heinous crimes against humanity,” said a senior Western diplomat in Kabul.
President Ashraf Ghani has said the decision on the release of the Taliban prisoners accused of serious crimes should be made by Loya Jirga, a grand assembly of Afghan elders.
Taliban sources and diplomats said the militant group was insistent on the freedom of the 400 militants on the list it has presented to Kabul.
“The Taliban are adamant about their release, the only middle path is to get the Afghan government to hand these militants to the Taliban if they agree to put them in house arrest,” Reuters quoted a diplomat in Kabul as saying.