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US & UK Not Happy with Taliban/Italian Hostage Exchange

Not surprisingly, the US and British governments aren’t thrilled that the Italian government apparently traded jailed Taliban officials for the Italian reporter who was being held:

The United States and Britain criticized Italy’s hostage deal with the Taliban on Wednesday, saying the release of five guerrillas in exchange for an Italian reporter put NATO troops in danger and encouraged kidnappings.

A senior U.S. administration official said Washington had formally complained to Rome through diplomatic channels for putting pressure on Kabul to release the Taliban, adding the deal ‘caught the U.S. by surprise.”

A spokeswoman at the British Foreign Office said the deal sent “the wrong signal to prospective hostage-takers.”