Afghanistan Thumbs Nose at US, Frees 65 Detainees
US fears 65 suspected militants will return to battlefield
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 13, 2014 12:07 AM CST
A detainee stands inside a cell inside the Parwan detention facility near Bagram north of Kabul, Afghanistan.    (AP Photo/David Guttenfelder, File)

(Newser) – Afghanistan released 65 accused militants from a former US prison today despite protests from the American military, which says the men are Taliban fighters who will likely return to the battlefield to kill coalition and Afghan forces. The release was ordered by President Hamid Karzai several weeks ago, after his government took over the prison from US troops. The decision prompted angry denunciations from Washington and further strained relations between the two countries ahead of the year-end withdrawal of most international combat troops.

US forces in Afghanistan say some of the men are responsible for killing or wounding dozens of international and Afghan soldiers. The US has argued for the detainees to face trial in Afghan courts—citing strong evidence against them, from DNA linking them to roadside bombs to explosive residue on their clothing—but Kabul has cited insufficient proof to hold them. Karzai has also referred to the Parwan prison as a "Taliban-producing factory" where innocent Afghans are tortured into hating their country. The US has grown increasingly frustrated with Karzai lately.

Copyright 2016 Newser, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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Showing 3 of 10 comments
Tony
Feb 16, 2014 1:51 PM CST
Those People will never learn to live in peace,, that Afghanistan president would have never been pres if the American youth who serve in ourarm forces have not given their lives and limbs for their cause,,, I say the hell with the middle east and let them fight among each other and bring our troops home, and let's concentrate on fixing our country before we address issues of others,,,, there is a saying, charity begins at home,,, let our government officials take care of their constituents before they start caring for people who do not pay their salaries
HANKHILL
Feb 13, 2014 4:02 PM CST
hey there caliph barack h. obama muslim ruler of the united muslim lands of moe. said that "karzai is the best friend" he has in the area! so there!
Chuck Roast
Feb 13, 2014 10:45 AM CST
I make this statement sadly: Before the US plays world cop again and creates another Afghanistan, Iraq , Vietnam, the US people need to realize they are not the greatest nation in the world anymore and focus on fixing the USA!