Mediator Piedad Cordoba, members of her Colombians for Peace group and Red Cross employees have left the airport of Villavicencio to pick up the first of five FARC hostages Cordoboa tweeted Wednesday morning.
The Brazilian helicopters were scheduled to leave for the south Colombian jungle at 6 AM, but were unable to leave until 8:40AM.
After take-off, the hostage release mission will go on its way to pick up Marcos Baquero, a councilman of the southern Colombian town of San Jose del Guaviare who was kidnapped by guerrillas in June 2009.
The exact location of the pick-up has been kept secret.
Baquero’s family was taken to the airport of Villavicencio where the hostage will be flown to after his release.
According to Cordoba, only exceptionally bad weather can prevent a successful operation. According to Beney, the weather conditions in Villavicencio are fine.
Wednesday’s hostage release operation is the first of three. On Friday, the FARC is set to release two hostages and on Sunday another two.
To allow the hostage release operation, the Colombian armed forces suspended all military operations against the FARC in the south of Colombia between Tuesday 6 PM and Wednesday midnight.