August 27, 2008
President Alvaro Uribe of Colombia is possibly the most popular elected leader in the world. The military's dazzling rescue of hostages held for years by leftist rebels, including Franco-Colombian politician Ingrid Betancourt and three American military contractors, coupled with his successful attacks on the guerrillas' drug trafficking, have led to approval ratings of which most politicians only dream: On a bad day, support for the president dips...
September 24, 2008 |
The renaming of a U.S. Embassy wing here in honor of a pilot killed by leftist rebels five years ago is expected to add a poignant postscript to the rescue of his three passengers by Colombian commandos in July. The 2009 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bill coming to a vote soon in Congress contains an amendment by Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) proposing that a section of the bunker-like embassy be renamed in honor of Thomas Janis. Passage is likely.
May 29, 2009
The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the oldest and strongest terrorist group in North or South America, turns 45 this week -- that's 45 years of kidnappings, murders, bombings and drug trafficking. And although the FARC, whose goal is to overthrow the democratically elected government, began terrorizing the country in 1964, many in the United States became aware of the rebels only a few years ago, when they captured three Americans.
December 27, 2007 |
In an unusual twist to an ongoing hostage saga, President Alvaro Uribe has agreed to let emissaries of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez travel to the Colombian jungle to take custody of three kidnapping victims set for release by their leftist rebel captors. The exchange could take place as early as today. The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, said last week that it would release hostages to Chavez if the logistics could be worked out.
December 9, 2007 |
"Not a day of your captivity goes by that I don't think of you," the teenager said into a radio microphone in Paris -- a message he hoped would reach his mother deep in the jungles of Colombia, where she has been held hostage for nearly six years. Ingrid Betancourt, a French-Colombian citizen, was abducted by leftist guerrillas while campaigning for Colombia's presidency in 2002.
February 25, 2002 |
A minor Colombian presidential candidate was apparently kidnapped by leftist rebels over the weekend while attempting to enter an increasingly anarchic zone once ceded by the government to guerrillas for peace talks. Ingrid Betancourt, a former senator who won popularity in Europe for a memoir about her fight to expose corruption in Colombia, was reported missing late Saturday along with her campaign manager, Clara Rojas.
June 5, 2007 |
President Alvaro Uribe on Monday began releasing 193 jailed rebels, including a leader who was kidnapped in Venezuela in 2004 and turned over to Colombian authorities. For nearly five years, Uribe had refused to swap any of the hundreds of guerrillas in Colombian prisons for the estimated 3,000 hostages held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, and other groups.
December 1, 2007 |
Colombian authorities reported Friday they had recovered "proof of life" videos showing three U.S. hostages and a former Colombian presidential candidate who has been held by leftist guerrillas for nearly six years. The discovery brought hope to the captives' families but was bound to fan the flames of a bizarre and heated dispute that saw Colombian President Alvaro Uribe abruptly call off the mediation efforts of his Venezuelan counterpart, Hugo Chavez, in the long-running ordeal.
July 3, 2008 |
Jo Rosano, a Connecticut mother whose son was kidnapped by Colombian rebels five years ago, said 2008 would be the year of miracles. On Wednesday, her prediction came true. Colombian soldiers infiltrated the jungle camp where her son, Marc Gonsalves, had been held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, known as FARC.