U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel listens to opening statements before testifying about the Bergdahl prisoner exchange at a House Armed Services Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington June 11, 2014.REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
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The American soldier released by Afghan insurgents in a swap with the Taliban will return to the United States on Friday after undergoing medical treatment at a military hospital in Germany, a US defense official said Thursday.In return for Bergdahl's release, the United States transferred five Taliban detainees held at Guantanamo prison to Qatar, in a deal that has sparked intense criticism in Washington.Bergdahl has yet to speak to the news media about his nearly five-year ordeal and Pentagon officials have said his health has been steadily improving in the days since his release. His disappearance from a base in eastern Afghanistan ni 2009 has prompted speculation that he deserted his post before he was captured.
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