Colombian President Alvaro Uribe said Thursday that the FARC are postponing the release of hostages Pablo Emilio Moncayo and Josue Daniel Calvo until close to the national elections in order to discredit the government.
“All that these FARC terrorists have demanded, the government has agreed to, so that [the FARC] will liberate them,” Uribe said.
“They want to present the liberation as an indication that they seek peace. Hopefully this is not another scam, like those the terrorist group have carried out in other election periods,” the president added.
“It’s very serious that they want to gain electoral prominence through terrorism, through the pain of the hostages… who they should have released long ago,” he went on.
Uribe reiterated that the government would initiate a peace dialogue with the FARC “in good faith, with the cessation of violence.”
The terms of the hostage release were announced on Monday by the FARC. Brazil will act as mediator in the liberation, providing transport and organizational support.
Negotiations over the hostages’ release have been ongoing for nearly a year.
Moncayo has been in FARC captivity since 1997, and Calvo since April last year. Both are Colombian soldiers.
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.