COLOMBIA SUPPORT NETWORK STATEMENT
ON RELEASE OF FARC HOSTAGES
February 7, 2009
The Colombia Support Network (CSN) applauds the efforts of Colombianas y Colombianos por la Paz, and especially the tireless efforts of Colombian Senator Piedad Cordoba, in spearheading the successful effort to obtain the release by the FARC guerillas of six persons long held as hostages. We also are pleased at the positive role played by the Government of Brazil and the International Committee of the Red Cross in providing fundamental supporting facilities and services without which the release of the hostages would not have taken place. The persons the FARC released included former Meta Governor Alan Jara and former Valle del Cauca Assembly Member Sigifredo Lopez, whose lengthy captivity under wretched conditions was unconscionable. We hope the freeing of these hostages will lead in short order to freeing of the remaining hostages being held by the FARC.
CSN repeats its categorical opposition to kidnapping, which is a violation of international law and of the human rights and basic human values of the hostages, whether they were kidnapped for money or as a political bargaining chip. We renew our demand as conscientious human beings that all FARC captives be released and that the FARC renounce kidnapping as a tactic once and for all. We also call upon the Colombian Government to pursue a negotiated solution to the Colombian conflict and to seek to facilitate hostage releases in the future. And we pledge to do whatever we may to help achieve the release of the remaining hostages and the establishment of the groundwork for peace.
John I. Laun, President of CSN, on behalf of the CSN Board of Directors and Membership