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Afghan government frees 900 Taliban prisoners as part of peace process

The release was part of a prisoner swap under a deal struck by the Taliban and the United States in Qatar in February, as a precursor to peace talks between the Islamist militants and an inclusive Afghan delegation aiming to end a two-decade-old war.

The Taliban had announced a three-day ceasefire for the Eid al-Fitr holiday that ends the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadan, a move that was welcomed by both the Afghan and U.S. governments.

Fighting between Taliban and Afghan forces had intensified before the ceasefire, and the government said it would resume an offensive against the militant group in the wake of its deadly attacks nationwide earlier this month.

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