Yellow ribbons line Main Street as the hometown of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl awaits his homecoming on June 1, 2014 in Hailey, Idaho. Scott Olson/Getty Images/AFP
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The Afghan president is angry at being kept in the dark over a deal to free five Taliban leaders in exchange for a captured U.S. soldier, and accuses Washington of failing to back a peace plan for the war-torn country, a senior source said Monday.The only known U.S. prisoner of war in Afghanistan, Bergdahl had been held captive for five years.Karzai has backed peace talks with the hardline Islamist Taliban movement, which ruled Afghanistan between 1996 and 2001 and has fought a bloody insurgency since then against U.S.-led forces in the country.U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan James Cunningham, speaking to reporters in Kabul, said the Karzai administration had been made aware of the impending prisoner swap.Karzai has yet to comment publicly on the swap that is bound to deepen the mistrust of a leader who has been fiercely critical of the U.S. administration in recent years.He is due to step down as president later this year, but many Afghans believe Karzai will continue to wield considerable influence over policy from behind the scenes.Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said he hoped the exchange might lead to breakthroughs in reconciliation with the militants and rejected accusations from Republicans that it resulted from negotiations with terrorists, insisting that the swap had been worked out by the Qatari government.
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