Taliban confirms detention of two Americans for first time

Taliban confirms detention of two Americans for first time

The Taliban has confirmed for the first time that two American citizens are in their custody, a spokesman said.

Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesperson, stated the Americans were detained for “violations of their laws.” While Mujahid acknowledged discussions with the U.S. government regarding the American detainees, he did not provide details of these talks.

“A number of foreign citizens are detained in Afghanistan, including two Americans, due to violations of Afghan laws,” Mujahid said.

Senior national security officials from the Biden administration have also confirmed the detention of two American citizens by the Taliban and are working towards their release. According to officials, these Americans entered Afghanistan after the Taliban’s takeover.

The U.S. State Department has emphasized its commitment to using every available means to secure the Americans’ release, stating that this situation is a major impediment to positive engagement with the Taliban.

NBC News reported, citing national security officials, that one of the detained Americans is Ryan Corbett. The identity of the second individual, who entered Afghanistan on a tourist visa after the Taliban’s ascent to power, was not disclosed. Ryan Corbett’s family has reported he has been in Taliban custody for over 600 days.

Drew Corbett, Ryan’s father, disputed claims of his son being well-treated. “People say that they are torturing him. You tell me, the Taliban said that he is in a guest house, he is not in a guest house. He is not eating well. And I have spoken to people that have been in prison with him,” he said.

Former President Donald Trump has remarked during his election campaigns that numerous Americans remained in Afghanistan post-U.S. withdrawal, essentially living as hostages.

However, U.S. national security officials stated that the two detained Americans went to Afghanistan after August 2021 and that other Americans in the country are there by choice.

The U.S. Department of State has not specified the number of Americans detained by the Taliban but has continuously stated that discussions for their unconditional release are ongoing. This issue has been highlighted as a barrier to positive interactions between the Taliban and the U.S.

“We have continually pressed, including in our meetings with Taliban representatives, for the immediate and unconditional release of Ryan Corbett and other Americans detained in Afghanistan. These detentions are a significant obstacle to positive engagement,” said State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller.

American media reports suggest Ryan Corbett owned a small financial company in Afghanistan and returned to the country in 2022 after departing in 2021.

Source » amu.tv