31 March 2010

Colombian Soldier Free After 12 Years

The FARC has freed a soldier captured back in the '90s.

Colombian rebels on Tuesday freed a government soldier who was held hostage in the jungle for more than 12 years and symbolized those left behind in the war against Latin America's oldest insurgency.
A Brazilian military helicopter operated by the Red Cross ferried Pablo Emilio Moncayo from Colombia's southern jungle to a civilian airport in Florencia, a town 370 km (230 miles) south of the capital Bogota.
He was smiling, in uniform and looking well as his family greeted him on the airport tarmac.
Moncayo, now 32, was a teenager when he was captured by guerrillas who overran his army communications base in 1997 and marched him into the jungle. He was seen only occasionally in rebel videos during his captivity.
"After more than 12 years in captivity, Sgt. Pablo Emilio Moncayo was handed over this afternoon, the Red Cross said in a statement.
His release was the second this week by the FARC, or Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, once a powerful rebel force that has been battered by President Alvaro Uribe's U.S.-backed war on guerrillas and cocaine traffickers.

By: Brant

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