Taliban hostages Timothy Weeks and Kevin King released three years after abduction | ABC News
Kevin King and Timothy Weeks spent three years in Taliban captivity
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has welcomed the release of Professors Kevin King and Timothy Weeks, who spent more than three years in captivity in Afghanistan. According to Pompeo, both men have been safely transferred to the American military and will soon be reunited with their families..
King and Weeks went to Afghanistan to teach at American University in that country.
“The Taliban say the release of the teachers was conceived as a gesture of goodwill that the United States welcomes,” Pompeo said. “We also welcome the Taliban’s planned release of 10 Afghan captives and the Afghan government’s planned release of three Taliban prisoners.. We see these as encouraging signs that the Afghan war – a terrible and devastating conflict that has been going on for 40 years – may soon end with a political settlement. “.
Pompeo thanked Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and other Afghan officials for moving forward with this goal while simultaneously efforts to strengthen and reform the Afghan security forces. He recalled that Ghani offered to negotiate with the Taliban without preconditions, and also called for a ceasefire during the Eid al-Adha celebrations in 2018, to which the Taliban reciprocated..
The secretary of state also noted that the United States highly appreciates the efforts of many Afghan politicians who are willing to put aside differences and do not use humanitarian gestures for personal political gain. “In addition to reducing the level of violence in Kabul in recent days, the aforementioned events give us hope for the success of the intra-Afghan peace talks, which the United States is ready to support,” concluded Pompeo..
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