WASHINGTON D.C. (MyNews4.com & KRNV) -- Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says the decision to exchange five Taliban leaders for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was done legally.
In testimony before the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday, Hagel said the decision to make the deal was a tough call for President Obama. Republicans and some Democrats have criticized the Obama administration for not telling Congress in advance, but Hagel said the exchange had to be made quickly, and any leak would have wrecked the deal.
"For all these reasons and more, the exchange needed to take place quickly, efficiently and quietly," said Hagel. "We believed this exchange was our last best opportunity to free him."
Although questions have been raised about Bergdahl's disappearance, Hagel said Bergdahl has not been charged with any misconduct. The Taliban held Bergdahl captive since 2009.