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Luis Diaz’s dad FREED in helicopter rescue 12 days after being kidnapped


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The father of Liverpool footballer Luis Diaz has been released by Colombia’s National Liberation Army, nearly two weeks after being kidnapped.

Luis Manuel Diaz was rescued by a helicopter nearly two weeks after he was first captured.

Diaz’s mother Cilenis Marulanda and father Luis Manuel Diaz were taken by armed men as they were driving in La Guajira province.

Marulanda was freed within hours, but the footballer’s father remained as a hostage.

Luis Manuel Diaz was released after 12 days as a hostage

The pair were taken by guerrilla fighters in their native country after 60 years of civil conflict which has seen at least 450,000 killed.

The kidnap interrupted peace talks between the government and the National Liberation Army, which began after a six-month ceasefire started in August.

Guerrilla groups in Colombia have historically used kidnapping as a fundraising and pressure tactic.

The government’s negotiating delegation said in a statement it celebrated the liberation and that Diaz was safe and sound, but that the kidnapping “should never have happened.”

“The current process with the ELN has advanced like no other until today.

“Regardless, our delegation considers that the kidnapping of Luis Manuel Diaz has placed our dialogue in a critical situation and because of it, the time has come to take decisions to eliminate kidnapping,” the statement said.

The ELN said a week ago it would free Diaz but his liberation was delayed amid a back-and-forth between the group and the government.

The rebels said military operations were impeding liberation efforts, which the army denied.

The government is trying to conduct negotiations with various armed groups, but discussions with the ELN are the most advanced.

In September it was reported that Colombian security sources expect that at least 40 per cent of ELN fighters could reject a potential peace deal and remain armed.

The atomised command structure of the ELN has long been a concern for security analysts and critics of the talks, who have warned the group’s most radical units are unlikely to adhere to an accord.

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Written by: radioroxi

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