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Taliban Prisoner With Local Roots Released
updated: May 31, 2014, 1:52 PM

The Taliban Prisoner with deep roots to Santa Ynez Valley has been released in exchange for five Guantanamo detainees, reports CNN.

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is an American soldier who has been held captive for nearly five years by militants during the Afghanistan war. Authorities announced today that he has been released in exchange for five Guantanamo detainees.

"Today the American people are pleased that we will be able to welcome home Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl," the White House said in a statement.

William Etling had written an article previously about the Bergdahl family roots in Solvang and Santa Ynez. The article can be read here.

According to CNN, Bergdahl was the only remaining U.S. soldier captured during conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was recovered by U.S. special operations forces about 10:30 a.m. ET in a peaceful handover in eastern Afghanistan, a senior Defense official told CNN. There were 18 Taliban members present.

Once on the American helicopter, Bergdahl, used a paper plate to communicate because of the noise. He wrote on it, "SF?" meaning, "Special Forces?" The operators sitting with Bergdahl responded loudly: "Yes, we've been looking for you for a long time," according to the official. Bergdahl broke down crying, the official recounted.

Read the full article at CNN.com

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