Doha 01st June 2014: American soldier Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has been released after being held in prison by Taliban in Afghanistan for nearly five years. Bergdahl’s freedom followed a swap deal, with Qatar acting as intermediary.
Taliban turned over the 28-year-old Bergdahl yesterday evening in Afghanistan. As part of his release, the US is turning over five Taliban detainees at the US prison and Qatari government will take custody of them.
“For his assistance in helping to secure our soldier’s return, I extend my deepest appreciation to the Emir of Qatar. The Emir’s personal commitment to this effort is a testament to the partnership between our two countries,” said US President Barack Obama.
Bergdahl was the only known missing US soldier in the Afghan war and he was in good condition, according to reports.
The Taliban opened their first official overseas office in the Qatari capital, Doha last summer to facilitate peace talks with Afghanistan and the United States. But they closed the headquarters less than a week later to protest the removal of its flag and a sign identifying the movement as the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.