2 Jul 2008

Colombian Green presidential candidate released

Greens have followed the many possible releases of Ingrid Betancourt - see here my previous blog - but they never seemed to come to anything - now it seems at last Colombian Green presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt has been rescued by security forces after more than six years' captivity as a hostage of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Great news indeed.

Interestingly the press reports just coming out this evening all fail to mention she was a Green candidate - anyhow Green Party Principal Speaker Caroline Lucas MEP has already expressed the party's joy at the liberation of our colleague.

She is quoted saying: "We are all relieved and delighted at the news that Ingrid Betancourt, and
the 14 other hostages, are safe at last and on their way home. Ingrid has endured an unimaginable six-year ordeal in FARC captivity, and years of death threats before that. A French national, she could have chosen an easy life in Europe or elsewhere but put herself in the line of fire to fight for democracy and peace in Colombia. Her personal bravery, moral courage and total commitment to the people of her country set her amongst the most inspirational women of our generation. Her safe return is a cause for celebration not just for Greens, but for all democrats."

Ingrid Betancourt was kidnapped on February 23rd 2002, while campaigning in the Colombian presidential election. The founder of the Oxygen Green Party, she served as a member of the country's Chamber of Representatives and as a Senator before launching her presidential bid.

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