Kidnapped soldier in Bolívar handed over to International Committee of the Red Cross

The soldier was handed over to a commission made up of delegates from the Catholic Church, the Ombudsman of Santa Rosa del Sur (Bolívar) and delegates from the International Committee of the Red Cross.  (Ricardo Monsalve - ICRC)
The soldier was handed over to a commission made up of delegates from the Catholic Church, the Ombudsman of Santa Rosa del Sur (Bolívar) and delegates from the International Committee of the Red Cross. (Ricardo Monsalve – ICRC)

On Thursday, January 12, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Colombia confirmed that the soldier who was kidnapped in the municipality of Santa Rosa del Sur (Bolívar) was handed over to a commission formed together with representatives of the Catholic Church and the Ombudsman of the said population.

“We value the humanitarian gesture of the armed group and we are glad that this person can return home soon. to meet with loved ones. We thank the parties for the trust they placed in our team to carry out this humanitarian operation,” said Stephanie Eller, head of the ICRC sub-delegation in Bucaramanga (Santander).

After leaving him with the representatives of the humanitarian agency, The soldier received medical attention to verify that he was in good health, to later transfer it to another area of ​​the department and there present it to the Army.

The ICRC recalled that They are always ready to be guarantors of this type of process for the liberationn of people illegally detained.

“We reiterate our availability to continue facilitating, as a neutral intermediary, this type of operation in order to alleviate the suffering caused by the armed conflicts in Colombia”, said Stephanie Eller.

The uniformed officer was released just after this Thursday the military force confirmed the plagiarism, which they attributed to the 37th Front of the extinct FARC.

“The complaint was made to the competent authorities for the crime of kidnapping our SL 18 Luis Domingo Morelos González, when he was on leave. According to the known information, this criminal action would have been perpetrated (…) by members of the residual armed group E37”, They affirmed in the Army through a statement.

They assured that the relatives of the uniformed they were receiving accompaniment from an interdisciplinary group that arranged for them and they affirmed this kidnapping was a violation of International Humanitarian Law.

After the letter from the Army, The armed group that had the soldier in its possession published a video as proof of survival, in which the soldier stated that they had respected his human rights and had not been abused.

“They have treated me in the best way, they have been respectful to me, they respected my life after I tried to flee, they behaved in the best way, They didn’t hurt me, they didn’t hit me, they didn’t mistreat me. As you can see, I’m in good health.” he claimed.

In the recording, the uniformed man explained that, allegedly, the armed group held him against his will because they found him consuming psychoactive substances. He added that within the unit to which he belongs there are several soldiers with addiction problems.

In the first days of 2023 there are already two soldiers kidnapped by the Farc dissidents. The first case was that of second sergeant Juan Gabriel Chichanoi Miramag.

According to the information provided by the institution, the officer, who was on leave, was moving over the sector known as El Hoyo, located between the municipalities of El Tambo and Patía, in the department of Cauca when he was approached by armed men on January 11.

As a result of these two cases, the Military Forces came out to request the immediate release of the uniformed “We reject the defenseless kidnapping of soldier Luis Domingo Morelos and second sergeant Juan Gabriel Chachinoy, by the Farc dissidents. We demand respect for the lives of our soldiers and their immediate release,” the military institution said.

On the other hand, the The Ministry of Defense reported that between January and November 2022, 183 cases of kidnapping of civilians and members of the public force. Of those, according to the portfolio, 54 were rescued.

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