The Colombian government and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) will within the next 48 hours sign the protocol for the release of FARC hostages Pablo Emilio Moncayo and Josue Daniel Calvo.
Defense Minister Gabriel Silva said Thursday that there are still logistical details of the agreement that need to be ironed out. The agreement on the protocols of the hostage release will be signed Thursday or Friday, the defense minister said.
Silva’s announcement follows Piedad Cordoba’s statement earlier that day that she had received the coordinates of the location where the FARC will release the hostages.
Caracol Radio reports that the ICRC and the Brazilian Embassy have worked together to define some of the aspects of the protocol, such as how the safety of foreign pilots will be ensured during the humanitarian mission.
The FARC authorized Brazil to be involved in organizing the logistics of the release operation.
Silva reiterated the government’s stance that the hostage liberation cannot take place during the Congress elections this Sunday.
“We are not going to suspend operations during the electoral process. On Sunday we are, without exception, concentrated on the democratic process,” Silva said.
One of the FARC’s conditions of the release is that all police and military operations be suspended in the area during the liberation.
The Colombian government maintain that police and military operations cannot be suspended around the time of the congressional elections on March 14.
Negotiations for Moncayo and Calvo’s release have been ongoing since April 2009 when the FARC first announced that it would release the hostages. Both are Colombian soldiers.
Following reports that Calvo is gravely ill, the government called on the guerrilla organization to release him.
In addition to the hostages, the FARC will also release the remains of policeman Julian Guevara, who died in 2006 after eight years in captivity.
A specific date for the FARC hostage liberation has not yet been set.