Congressional and administration officials say fears the Taliban might kill Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl if word got out that he was being exchanged for five Guantanamo Bay detainees drove the Obama administration not to notify Congress about the deal in advance.
Two senior U.S. officials tell The Associated Press there was no overt threat by the Taliban but rather an assessment based on intelligence reports that Bergdahl's life would be in jeopardy if news of the exchange leaked and the deal failed.
The officials spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment by name.
A federal law requires Congress to be told 30 days before a prisoner is released from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.