President Juan Manuel Santos has denied accusations that FARC leader “Alfonso Cano” traveled in one of the Brazilian helicopters that carried out the recent hostage release mission, reports El Espectador.
The allegations came in the form of questions at an ideological forum, “Conservative Party Thought in the 21st Century,” from ex-Minister Andres Felipe Arias.
Arias took Santos to task over a rumour that had been moving within political circles this week that Alfonso Cano used a Brazilian release mission helicopter to move from Tolima, the site of Sunday’s failed hostage release.
In his speech to the forum, Santos refuted Arias’ claims, stating, “There is no way the helicopters were used to remove [Alfonso Cano] because we know exactly where he is …. we are not fools. We do not allow operations to facilitate his escape.”
Santos added that the government is “breathing down the neck,” of Alfonso Cano, and that he will “fall as ‘Mono Jojoy’ fell.”
The president also spoke of possible future peace talks with the guerrilla group, Semana reported Thursday.
“I want to be the president who won peace,” but until the FARC renounce their terrorist activities and release all hostages, “the door is closed.” He also stressed that any talk of peace must be handled with two values at its core: patience and a cool head.
Earlier on Thursday, government delegate to the release operation, Eduardo Pizarro, also slammed the FARC for the way they conducted the whole affair, stating that they exploited the whole process for political purposes.
Both men were successfully freed on Wednesday.