One rebel was wounded and another captured in the combat leading up to the liberation of the hostage.
The 84-year-old was kidnapped in the Pasto municipality on March 13. The rebels demanded an unspecified amount of money for his release.
Soldiers from the army’s Third Division were allegedly led to the rebel hideout with information provided by locals.
The ELN has, unlike the country’s larger rebel group the FARC, not vowed to end the practice of kidnapping for financial reasons. The rebel group, with some 2,000 armed members, has on several occasions expressed interest in initiating peace talks with the Colombian government.
Meanwhile, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos has said he wanted peace talks with the ELN “sooner rather than later.”
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- Autoridades rescatan a comerciante secuestrado por el Eln en Nariño (El Colombiano)
- Ejército rescata a un comerciante secuestrado en Nariño (El Tiempo)
- Liberan a un ciudadano en Nariño (Caracol Radio)