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Govt to Release Thousands of Prisoners Amid COVID-19

26 Mar 2020 Tolo News

The Afghan government said on Thursday that based on President Ghani's decree, up to 10,000 prisoners-- including women and children--will be released in the upcoming 10 days to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus in Afghan detention centers.

Ahmad Rashid Totakhil, head of the general directorate of prisons, said that those to be released will not pose a major threat.

“The persons that we are releasing --some of them are under the authority of the president. They are not a big threat to society, they had committed small crimes,” said Totakhil.

“Because we do not have any vaccine or treatment for the virus, the only way is to implement health-recommended measures. The measures are very easy and can save the lives of millions,” said Ferozuddin Feroz, Public Health Minister.

The Attorney General's Office (AGO) said that those will not be released who pose a threat to national security.

“Another issue that is very important for people to know is that crimes against national and international security and terrorist crimes are not included in the decree,” said Mohammad Farid Hamidi, head of the AGO.

Meanwhile, Abdullah Abdullah said that politics should not be involved in the fight against the coronavirus.

“This is not a political problem… All of us--poor and rich--need unity regarding the (COVID-19),” said Abdullah.

Officials at the Ministry of Public Health said that six health employees have been infected by the virus in Herat and Kandahar provinces.

Based on the Ministry of Public Health figures, more than 90 people have been infected by the COVID-19 virus in Afghanistan.

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