The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, have released a video of a former Colombian congressman whom they kidnapped five years ago.In the recording, Oscar Tullio Lizcano calls upon Bogota and the international community to negotiate a peace deal with the left-wing rebels. President Alvaro Uribe’s government recently formed an international commission including “friendly countries” to do just that. Lizcano’s wife Marta said: “This video fills us with hope and happiness. It gives us new strength to keep fighting and lets us know that Oscar is alive even though he looks a little tired and thin.” The FARC are holding a total of 59 military and political figures hostage, hoping to exchange them for 500 jailed rebels. Colombian Ingrid Betancourt, who also has French nationality, was seized in 2002 while campaigning in presidential elections. The FARC have been battling to establish a Marxist state in Colombia since the early 1960s. Every year, thousands die and tens of thousands more are forced from their homes by the guerrilla war.
Colombian hostage makes video plea for negotiations