Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

Germany and Russia 'discuss secret Ukraine deal'

Read more

WEB NEWS

Fake Twitter accounts spread Chinese propaganda

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Argentina set for deeper recession after default

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Dr Matshidiso Moeti, Former WHO Deputy Regional Director for Africa

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Towards a 'Third Intifada'?

Read more

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run? (part 2)

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

France commemorates a hero of the left

Read more

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run?

Read more

FOCUS

What solutions for California's overcrowded prisons?

Read more

  • France remembers murdered socialist hero Jean Jaurès

    Read more

  • Israel calls up 16,000 more reservist as Gaza death toll soars

    Read more

  • Sierra Leone declares state of emergency over Ebola outbreak

    Read more

  • Kiev declares 24-hour ceasefire to aid MH17 probe

    Read more

  • Video: Inside Hamas ‘terror’ tunnels in Gaza

    Read more

  • Scores feared dead in India landslide

    Read more

  • Russia ordered to pay further €1.9 billion to Yukos shareholders

    Read more

  • Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run?

    Read more

  • Russia defiant as US, EU unveil 'phase three' sanctions

    Read more

  • US House votes to sue Obama for over-reaching his powers

    Read more

  • Argentina fails to reach deal with creditors

    Read more

  • Women should not laugh in public, Turkey's deputy PM says

    Read more

  • Suspect in Jewish Museum attack charged in 'terrorist' killings

    Read more

  • Rats on the rampage at Louvre museum gardens

    Read more

Castro calls on FARC to free all hostages

Latest update : 2008-07-07

Cuba's former leader Fidel Castro posted an Internet article urging the Colombian rebels to release the hundreds of hostages they had kidnapped, though he also advised them against laying down their weapons.

Cuba's former president Fidel Castro has urged the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) group to free its remaining hostages, after the rescue last week by Colombian commandos of 15 captives held by the Marxist rebels.
   
Castro however cautioned that the leftist guerrillas should not lay down their weapons, warning that as a rule, fighters who have done so over the past half-century "did not survive to see the peace."
   
"I have openly and energetically criticized the objectively cruel methods of kidnapping and holding prisoners in the jungle," Castro wrote in an Internet article posted late Saturday, just days after Colombia's military rescued the group's most prized hostages.
   
"If I may dare to suggest something to the FARC guerrillas, it is that they simply, by whatever means at their disposal, declare that they have unconditionally freed all the hostages and prisoners still under their control."
   
The FARC continues to hold several hundred hostages, although its most valuable captives were among the 15 -- including French-Colombian politician Ingrid Betancourt and three American defense contractors -- rescued Wednesday by Colombian soldiers, who infiltrated a FARC jungle hideout and tricked guerrillas into handing them over.
   
In a separate article on Thursday, Castro praised the Colombian army's rescue of the hostages and said they should never have been held.
   
The ailing former president, 81, leader of Cuba's 1959 Marxist revolution, is an ideological kindred spirit with the FARC and an inspiration for the rebel group, as well as millions of other radicals and leftists across Latin America.
   
Castro gave up power two years ago after a half-century's rule of Cuba for health reasons, and ceding power to his brother Raul Castro, who formally took over as president in February.

Date created : 2008-07-07

COMMENT(S)