Colombia’s largest left-wing guerrilla group, FARC, on Tuesday defended the recent kidnapping of two policeman by claiming that the officers are “prisoners of war.”
“We reserve the right to capture as prisoners members of the security forces who have surrendered in combat. They are called prisoners of war, and this phenomenon occurs in every conflict in the world,” claimed the FARC.
The FARC also stated that they had repeatedly requested that the Colombian government take part in an exchange of prisoners, a request the government has consistently denied.
The release of the statement comes after the FARC reportedly kidnapped two policemen on January 25.
The rebel group has been active in Colombia since 1964. The current administration is immersed in talks with the insurgents in Havana, Cuba to seek a negotiated end to the country’s decades-long armed conflict.
BACKGROUND: Colombia’s armed conflict