Colombia’s largest rebel group FARC on Friday announced to have captured an allegedly retired US navy seaman in the south of the country.
American soldier held prisoner by the FARC
Name: Kevin Scott Sutay
From: New York City
Passport number: 488667176
Served in the US Military: November 17, 2009 – March 22, 2013
According to a statement on the rebels’ website, they are holding New York native Kevin Scott Sutay prisoner after capturing the retired US official in the southern department of Guaviare.
The FARC offered to release the hostage in the same statement.
According to the rebels, the American hostage told them he served in the US Navy between November 2009 until March this year and is an Afghanistan war veteran.
According to the rebel statement, the captured American said to have served as an anti-explosives expert in the 541ST company and the 54TN engineer battalion.
According to the guerrillas, the American was carrying his passport, indicating he entered Colombia on June 8 after visiting Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama. The FARC said he was subsequently taken prisoner in El Retorno, a municipality located in the southern Colombian jungles, on June 20.
The FARC said that “in spite of the right we have to hold soldier Kevin Scott as prisoner of war, we took the political decision to release him as a gesture that falls within the environment of peace talks that are being held in Havana.”
The American soldier is the first US citizen to be held by the FARC since July 2008 when three kidnapped American military contractors were rescued from their FARC captors.
The rebel group has since banned kidnapping for economic reasons, but reserved the right to capture enemy combatants.
El Retorno, Guaviare
- Comunicado (FARC-EP)