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Afghan Peace Council Welcomes Pakistan's Taliban Releases

Afghan peace negotiators are welcoming the release of eight Taliban prisoners who were being held in Pakistan.

Ismail Qasimyar, head of international relations for the Afghan High Peace Council, said on January 1 that the release is "a practical step in the right direction."

Former Taliban justice minister Nooruddin Turabi is among the eight freed one day earlier by Islamabad after appeals from Kabul.

Afghan officials believe Taliban leaders released from Pakistani jails could help bring militants to the negotiating table.

Based on reporting by AFP and AP