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Uribe slammed by freed hostage

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Uribe slammed by freed hostage


The latest hostage to be released by Colombian rebels has launched a stinging attack on the country’s president. Former local governor Alan Jara had been held for more than seven years by the leftist FARC group, which said it was freeing him as a goodwill gesture.

Afterwards, Jara criticised President Alvaro Uribe’s military crackdown on the rebels, saying he was in greater danger from army bombs than from the FARC. “I don’t think President Uribe’s attitude has helped at all with the humanitarian exchange nor the release of hostages,” he told a press conference. Jara is the fifth hostage to be liberated in recent days. Uribe welcomed three soldiers and a policeman freed at the beginning of the week. Provincial politician Sigifredo Lopez is due to be handed over tomorrow. Uribe’s US-funded anti-FARC operations have battered the rebels. But they are still believed to hold hundreds of hostages. The President has consistently rejected their offer to swap the captives for FARC prisoners.

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