FARC holding Colombia general, talks hang in balance

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos suspended peace talks with the FARC rebel group after the abduction of General Ruben Alzate (L), shown here on August 15, 2014Colombia’s FARC guerrillas confirmed Tuesday that they are holding a missing general whose kidnapping caused the government to suspend peace talks aimed at ending the country’s 50-year-old conflict. In a statement datelined from the Colombian mountains and published on the FARC website, the leftist rebels’ Ivan Rios unit said it had captured General Ruben Alzate, Corporal Jorge Rodriguez and army adviser Gloria Urrego, who disappeared Sunday in the remote department of Choco. Alzate, who heads an army task force charged with fighting rebels and drug traffickers in the jungle-covered Choco region, is the highest-ranking officer to be captured by the FARC in five decades of conflict. His captors said they would respect FARC leaders’ orders on what to do with their hostages.

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