Taliban Releases American Hostage in Exchange for Afghan Drug Trafficker

The Taliban has released an American engineer they’d kept captive since 2020 in exchange for a Taliban-linked Afghan tribal leader, who was serving a life sentence in a U.S. prison on heroin trafficking charges.
Taliban Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi said the prisoner exchange between American hostage Mark Frerichs and Taliban ally Bashir Noorzai took place at the Kabul airport on Monday, according to Reuters.
U.S. President Joe Biden said the deal to release Frerichs “required difficult decisions” that he “did not take lightly,” referring to the release of Noorzai, who was arrested in 2005 for smuggling heroin into the United States….

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