Opposition senator Piedad Cordoba questioned the government’s lack of action and awareness of public opinion after publication of proof-of-life videos of ten members of Colombia’s security forces held captive by the FARC., The senator urges Congress to take action to push a prisoner swap.
“I want to suggest to the government that we assume an attitude of honesty, allowing us to play a much more decent, dignified and committed role regarding [hostage] releases. To this end I propose that the Senate of the Republic form a committee to talk with the President of the Republic to take certainty and clarity as far as it can go,” said Cordoba.
Senator Cordoba has long been pressuring President Alvaro Uribe‘s government to make a humanitarian agreement with the rebel group to effectuate a prisoner exchange. So far the government has not capitulated.
The senator said that kidnapping charges will eventually take the FARC to the International Criminal Court, along with the government themselves.
“The government has no compelling arguments to [support their refusal to exchange imprisoned FARC guerrillas for hostages],” Cordoba added.
A FARC courier, allegedly on his way to Senator Cordoba to deliver footage of hostages, was arrested by police Saturday night after which the authorities showed the videos of the hostages chained and obviously disorientated.
The guerrillas hold 24 members of the security forces and hundreds of civilians hostage. The FARC wants to swap the soldiers and policemen for hundreds of jailed guerrillas.