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Sarkozy calls on FARC leaders to free hostages

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Sarkozy calls on FARC leaders to free hostages


In an unprecedented move, French president Nicolas Sarkozy has called on Colombian rebels to free their hostages, including Franco-Colombian politician Ingrid Betancourt.

She was kidnapped in February 2002 while running in the Colombian presidential campaign.

Addressing the chief of the FARC rebels, Sarkozy said: “Mister Marulanda, I am solemnly asking you to release Ingrid Betancourt, and not to risk having her disappearance on your conscience.”

Betancourt is a valuable bargaining chip for the guerrillas, who want to exchange some 50 high-profile hostages against 500 of their members being held in Colombian jails.

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