US Man Held Hostage by Taliban Goes Free
(ConservativeHub.com) – Recently, US officials have been pushing efforts to retrieve Americans detained in other countries. So far, the Biden Administration has not successfully negotiated an exchange to get WNBA basketball player Brittney Griner back from Russia yet, but the POTUS did announce a different exchange deal the government reached with the Taliban for an abducted American citizen.
In January 2020, Taliban forces kidnapped Navy veteran Mark Frerichs while he was working in Afghanistan as a civilian contractor. On Monday, September 19, the White House announced he was returning home after President Joe Biden and his Cabinet negotiated a trade to swap for a prominent Taliban member and convicted drug lord, Bashir Noorzai.
— The Hill (@thehill) September 19, 2022
Noorzai arrived in Afghanistan on Monday to celebrate his release from a US federal prison. Federal authorities arrested him in 2005, a federal court convicted him in 2008 on charges of attempting to smuggle $50 million of heroin, and a US District Court judge for the Southern District of New York sentenced the drug lord to life in prison in 2009. The financier and weapons trader is believed to be an associate of Mullah Mohammad Omar, who started the Taliban years ago.
This prisoner swap comes as many Americans have pressured US leadership to bring home Americans detained overseas for illegitimate reasons. Frerichs friends and family are celebrating his homecoming. Yet, former DEA employee Derek Maltz, was quoted by USA Today saying the move would be “an absolute disaster for America.”
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