Pakistan freeing 7 more Taleban prisoners 'to facilitate Afghan reconciliation'

ISLAMABAD (AP/AFP) - Pakistan's Foreign Ministry says the authorities are freeing seven more Taleban prisoners to facilitate a peace process aimed at reaching a political resolution to the war in neighboring Afghanistan.

The Saturday statement did not make clear if the releases had already happened or were in the process of happening. Some 26 other Taleban detainees were freed last year.

"In order to further facilitate the Afghan reconciliation process, Pakistan is releasing seven Taleban detainees, namely Mansoor Dadullah, Said Wali, Abdul Manan, Karim Agha, Sher Afzal, Gul Muhammad and Muhammad Zai," the ministry said in a statement.

It is not clear why Islamabad, which has historical ties with the Afghan Taleban but which is battling its own branch of the militant movement, had arrested the men originally.

The move comes less than two weeks after Afghan President Hamid Karzai visited Pakistan to discuss the peace negotiations. Kabul wants Pakistan to help with the process.