Colombia’s largest rebel group FARC demand the presence of a foreigner in the release of six hostages as promised by the rebels in December.
President Álvaro Uribe already prohibited any foreign involvement in
The FARC wrote opposition senator Piedad Córdoba (Liberal Party) they accept the involvement of the Red Cross in the release, but demand a foreigner “considering the manipulation and abuse this government has embarked in its [the Red Cross’] name.”
During operation ‘Jaque’, the military operation that liberated Ingrid Betancourt, three U.S. contractors and eleven members of Colombia’s security forces, one of the members of the military rescue team wore a Red Cross jacket, something that is forbidden by international law.
The FARC now say they will hand over the hostages to Córdoba, a second representative of the ‘Colombians for Peace’ group and “some democratic person of a brother country or the international community who also will serve as guarantor.”
The rebels say President Uribe will have to agree with all conditions “if he really is interested in a soon return of the six prisoners to their home”.
Uribe previously rejected the involvement of any foreigner to avoid the FARC to make a “show” of the release. In response, relatives of the hostages asked the President not to complicate or frustrate the release.
The six hostages the FARC now promises to release are part of a group of 28 political hostages the rebels want to trade for 500 guerrillas currently held inColombian and U.S. jails. The FARC is suspected to hold another 700 people hostage for extortion purposes.