DONALD Trump's peace deal with the Taliban has been thrown into confusion after the Afghani president revealed he has no immediate plans to release 5,000 prisoners.
The landmark agreement signed on Saturday stated thousands of Taliban fighters would be freed in exchange for up to 1,000 government detainees by March 10.
However, just 24 hours later the Afghani president said that releasing the hardline prisoners "cannot be a prerequisite for talks".
Ashraf Ghani said: "There is no commitment to releasing 5,000 prisoners."
"This is the right and the self-will of the people of Afghanistan. It could be included in the agenda of the intra-Afghan talks, but cannot be a prerequisite for talks."
He added the release of prisoners was "not in the authority of the US" but "in the authority of the Afghan government".
An estimated 10,000 captured Taliban are currently being held in military prisons in Afghanistan, reports the BBC.
The deal reached in Qatar stated the US will "work with all relevant sides on a plan to expeditiously release" prisoners, before adding it will happen by the start of "intra-Afghan talks" on March 10.
However, the US-Afghan joint declaration then released a statement later saying the US will facilitate between the government and Taliban on the "feasibility" of prisoner release.
President Trump brokered a peace deal with the Taliban aiming to bring an end to an 18-year war in Afghanistan.
The peace agreement brings the US one step closer to fulfilling one of Trump's key campaign promises to pull America out of its "endless wars".
The deal was signed by the US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban political chief Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was there to witness the historic moment.
Under the agreement, the US will begin withdrawing thousands of troops in exchange for the Taliban promising to stop using Afghanistan as a launchpad for terrorist attacks.
If the Taliban meet their commitments, all 13,000 US troops would leave in 14 months.
Pompeo said the US is "realistic" about the peace deal, but is "seizing the best opportunity for peace in a generation".
'A MONUMENTAL DAY'
And he said he was still angry about the September 11, 2001 attacks that were planned by Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida under Taliban protection in Afghanistan.
He said the US will not "squander" what its soldiers "have won through blood, sweat and tears".
The US invaded Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks to overthrow the Taliban.
The group notoriously hosted Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida as they planned and celebrated the assault that killed almost 3,000 Americans.
The Taliban, which is an extremely violent group in Afghanistan, isn't believed to have directly engaged in international terrorism with the West – despite supporting it.
The US Embassy in Kabul said on Twitter: "Today is a monumental day for Afghanistan. It is about making peace and crafting a common brighter future. We stand with Afghanistan."
Hours before the deal was officially signed, the Taliban ordered all of its fighters in Afghanistan "to refrain from any kind of attack … for the happiness of the nation".
Zabiullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the hardline Islamist group, said: "The biggest thing is that we hope the U.S. remain committed to their promises during the negotiation and peace deal."
President George W. Bush ordered the US-led invasion of Afghanistan in response to 9/11.
Some US troops currently serving in the country were not born when the World Trade Center collapsed on that September morning.
Wihtin months, the Taliban sent Osama bin Laden and top al-Qaida militants across the border into Pakistan.
The war continued to drag as the US tried to establish a stable, functioning state.
The Taliban soon regrouped and currently hold influence in more than half of the country.
The US spent more than $750billion and more than 2,000 US military men and women died.
Source: Read Full Article