Colombia’s largest rebel group, the FARC, have released a policeman who had been captured last week, the Red Cross (ICRC) announced Tuesday.
According to the humanitarian aid organization, the 19-year-old Carlos Andres Valderrama was handed over to ICRC delegates at an undisclosed location in the Pacific department of Choco.
The release is the second this week; On Sunday, the FARC also released a policeman who guerrillas had captured a few days before.
The FARC, fighting the Colombian state since 1964, last year announced to end the controversial practice of kidnapping for economic purposes.
The rebels have since detained security officials, one foreign journalist and one American ex-marine, but — with the exception of the former US official — surrendered captives within a relatively short time and without publicly demanding ransom or holding hostages as political leverage.
The FARC has been involved in peace talks with the government since November last year and have since agreed on an agrarian reform. The government and rebels still have to reach agreement on the FARC’s political future, their involvement in drug trafficking and the reparation of the groups hundreds of thousands of victims.
According to the Red Cross, humanitarian aid workers of the organization have received more than 1,500 people from illegal armed groups since 1994.
- Press release ICRC
- Farc liberan a policía que había sido secuestrado en el Chocó (EFE)