- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 9, 2014

Afghan President Hamid Karzai announced Thursday that 72 high-profile detainees that intelligence officials insist are a threat to American troops will be released.

The Afghan government’s statement claimed that the evidence presented for 72 of the 88 detainees in question did not meet a standard that warranted a trial, the Associated Press reported.

The detainees will be released within days. The remaining 16 will remain in custody pending further review, AP reported.

“We cannot allow innocent Afghan citizens to be kept in detention for months and years without a trial for no reason at all,” Karzai spokesman Aimal Faizi told Reuters.

U.S. officials said “ample” evidence has been collected by U.S. and Afghan intelligence communities, according to AP.

The snub comes as the two nations try to hammer out a long-term Bilateral Security Agreement.

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