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Colombian rebel group ELN releases six hostages, says ICRC

AFP  |  Bogota 

Colombia's rebels Wednesday freed six people they kidnapped in August, a government precondition for returning to peace talks, the said.

"Today in Choco, we were with the humanitarian commission that facilitated the release of the six people who had been held by the since August. We are pleased that they will be able to meet with their families soon," the group said on

The group -- three policemen, a soldier and two civilian contractors abducted by the guerrillas August 3 -- were handed over to a humanitarian commission made up of the Ombudsman, the ICRC and the

over the weekend demanded the release of "all" hostages held by the rebels to resume the talks started under the previous government of Juan Manuel Santos, in

The government says the kidnapped 18 people between 2012 and September 2018 -- minus these six freed and three more released last week. At least nine remain.

Duque, which took office on August 7 with the promise of toughening conditions on the negotiations, also wants the ELN to stop criminal actions to resume peace talks. They could end a half a century of armed conflict.

The ELN is Colombia's last guerrilla force. The larger -- Revolutionary Armed forces of -- has disarmed and become a political party.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, September 13 2018. 04:00 IST