Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

Federal Reserve hikes interest rates, raises forecast

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Saudi Arabia and UAE pledge €130M for G5 Sahel Joint Force

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

‘Trump still committed to a two-state solution,’ says Saudi Foreign Minister Jubeir

Read more

THE DEBATE

How to patrol the Sahara? The challenges facing G5 Sahel joint force

Read more

ENCORE!

Film show: 'Star Wars, The Last Jedi'

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Evo Morales: US exit from Paris accord is 'unforgivable'

Read more

FOCUS

Niger's Agadez: Pearl of the Sahara turned migrant hub

Read more

FOCUS

Spain's Tagus river is drying up

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

'Looking for Oum Kulthum': Breaking the glass ceiling in the art world

Read more

Americas

Colombia's ELN rebels free kidnapped Dutch reporters

© Twitter | The two journalists are pictured with their captors

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2017-06-24

Rebels with Colombia's National Liberation Army (ELN) group have freed two Dutch journalists snatched days ago in the country's northeast, officials said Saturday.

Colombia's ombudsman office, which handles human rights issues, wrote on Twitter that the rebel group freed reporter Derk Johannes Bolt, 62, and his cameraman Eugenio Ernest Marie Follender, 58, in a rural area of Norte de Santander state.

The office posted an accompanying photos purporting to show the pair, pictured with some of the rebels, along with Colombian human rights officials.

The announcement came after rebels issued what turned out to be an erroneous announcement earlier Friday stating the two men, who were kidnapped on June 19, had been released.

Officials feared the high-profile kidnapping could disrupt peace talks between the ELN and the Colombian government.

The Dutch journalists work for Spoorloos, a program on Kro-Ncrv TV that helps Dutch people trace their biological relatives around the world.

The government of Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos and ELN opened peace talks on February 7 in Quito, Ecuador, after nearly four years of secret negotiations.

The ELN, with 1,500 fighters, is the last guerrilla group still active in Colombia.

The government is seeking a "complete peace" with the ELN after reaching a peace accord last year with the much larger FARC -- the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.

The Colombian civil conflict erupted in 1964 when the FARC and ELN took up arms for rural land rights.

The fighting, which over the years drew in various rebel and paramilitary groups and drug gangs as well as state forces, has left at least 260,000 people dead, according to authorities.

(AFP)

Date created : 2017-06-24

  • COLOMBIA

    Three killed in Colombia shopping centre blast

    Read more

  • COLOMBIA

    Colombia reveals 92 children among victims of Mocoa mudslide

    Read more

  • COLOMBIA

    Colombia’s FARC rebels start disarming under UN supervision

    Read more

COMMENT(S)