WASHINGTON (AP) — The captors of an American soldier Bowe Bergdahl, held for nearly five years in Afghanistan, have signaled a willingness to release him but are unclear which U.S. government officials have the authority to make a deal.

That's according to a U.S. defense official and a military officer working for the release of Sgt. Bergdahl of Hailey.

Critics of the release effort blame disorganization and poor communication among the numerous U.S. agencies involved. A defense official says about two dozen officials at the State and Defense departments, the military, the CIA and FBI are working on the case.  The White House and Defense Department are defending their work to release Bergdahl.