Pakistan to release highest-ranking Afghan Taliban prisoner as soon as this month

A senior government official says Pakistan has decided to release the most senior Afghan Taliban prisoner it is holding as soon as this month.

The Afghan government has long requested that Pakistan release Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Afghan Taliban's former deputy leader. He was arrested in 2010 in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi.

Sartaj Aziz, adviser to the Pakistani prime minister on national security and foreign affairs, said Tuesday that Pakistan has agreed to release Baradar and it could happen this month.

Pakistan has released at least 33 Afghan Taliban prisoners over the last year. Seven were released on Saturday.

The most recent release followed a visit to Pakistan by Afghan President Hamid Karzai at the end of August.