LAHORE - Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani said Sunday that a seven-day partial truce, which set the conditions for the signing of a US-Taliban deal, would continue possibly until a full ceasefire could be negotiated.

“The reduction in violence will continue with a goal to reach a full ceasefire," Ghani told a press conference. "General (Scott) Miller has told Taliban to do so. It is expected (to continue)," he added, referring to the US commander in charge of foreign forces in Afghanistan.

According to international media reports, Ghani says his government has not pledged to free Taliban prisoners, as stated in a deal reached by the US and the militants. Under the landmark agreement signed on Saturday in Qatar, 5,000 Taliban would be released in exchange for up to 1,000 government detainees by 10 March.

Ghani said such a prisoner release "cannot be a prerequisite for talks", but must be part of negotiations. The US-Taliban agreement includes a phased withdrawal of US troops. In return, the Taliban group agreed to hold peace talks with the Afghan government.

Less than 24 hours after the deal was signed in Doha, the Afghan president told reporters in Kabul: "The reduction in violence will continue with a goal to reach a full ceasefire." But he added: "There is no commitment to releasing 5,000 prisoners.”

"This is the right and the self-will of the people of Afghanistan. It could be included in the agenda of the intra-Afghan talks, but cannot be a prerequisite for talks." Any prisoner release, he added, was "not in the authority of the US" but "in the authority of the Afghan government." An estimated 10,000 captured Taliban are being held in Afghanistan.

More than 2,400 American troops have been killed during the conflict. About 12,000 are still stationed in the country. The US and its NATO allies agreed to withdraw all troops within 14 months if the militants uphold the deal. US President Donald Trump, who had promised to end the Afghan conflict, said on Saturday that it was "time to bring our people back home". Mr Trump said 5,000 US troops would leave Afghanistan by May and he would meet Taliban leaders in the near future.

He added that US troops had been killing militants in Afghanistan "by the thousands" and now it was "time for someone else to do that work and it will be the Taliban and it could be surrounding countries". Nearly 3,500 members of the international coalition forces have died in Afghanistan since the 2001 invasion.

The figures for Afghan civilians, militants and government forces are more difficult to quantify. In a February 2019 report, the UN said that more than 32,000 civilians had died.