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Colombia: Hostage Rescue Raises Concerns

After the rescue dubbed as “perfect” by liberated former Presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt, who was rescued by the Colombian army on Wednesday July 2nd along with 14 other hostages being held captive by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) for up to 10 years in some cases. The Colombian community has been voicing concerns about the repercussions the rescue might have, and what interests might have been behind it.

Blogger Victor Solano reports on a news article in French found in Radio Suisse Romande [fr]and one in Spanish on Spain's elpais.com [es] saying that the US army gave 20 million dollars to the FARC for the liberation of the 15 hostages .

In micro blogging website Twitter, Jerome Sutter [es] suggests that this economic exchange might be the cause of the few official reactions Sarkozy has had.

Also from Twitter, Gerente [es] quotes a famous radio anchor, Julito, from a popular radio show in W radio station, who reported that polemic Colombian writer Fernando Vallejo had said that “the liberation of the hostages was manipulative, roguish and horrible.”… turns out to be that what Vallejo really said [es] was that Ingrid Betancourt herself is those things,and the way that the media is concentrating only on her and not on all the other hundreds of hostages is scandalous.

Marsares from equinoXio [es] online magazine writes that the operation has been so perfect, people are now doubting it. He doesn't share this perception so then he proceeds to establish counterpoint arguments for their criticisms. However, he does make an allowance, admitting that the fact that the “Trojan horse” [en] strategy was used, by pretending to be a humanitarian mission and could make it harder for other hostages to receive any kind of humanitarian aid in the future.

Journalist and blogger Anastasia Moloney writes that some families fear that guerrillas will strike back at remaining hostages, killing them or hurting their families, and that now that Ingrid is freed along with the three North American citizens, that international pressure to free the remaining hostages will disappear.

Thumbnail photo by Redking

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