Colombia's FARC rebels said they will soon release French journalist Roméo Langlois, whom the group has now officially claimed to have kidnapped on April 28.
According to BBC News, information was published on a Twitter account said to belong to the FARC. The rebel group stated it captured Langlois, 35, while he was embedded with counter-narcotics forces to film a raid on a cocaine laboratory for a documentary. The tweets also said the France 24 journalist "will soon be freed safe and sound."
A video was also posted on YouTube on Sunday, with a man calling himself Ancizar, or "Monazo," claiming to be the commander of the Bloc 15 Squadron of the FARC and saying the militant group is responsible for the kidnapping.
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"The 15th division informs the public that the French journalist, who was dressed in military clothes and captured in battle, is in our hands as a prisoner of war," said Ancizar, according to France 24. The rebel leader also said they were aware Langlois is a journalist and a French national, and that they hoped to "overcome this impasse soon."
Fox News reported that Colombia's defense minister said Langlois removed the helmet and flak jacket that the army had given him during the combat and identified himself as a civilian.
According to Colombia Reports, the guerilla group's only condition for Langlois's release was "broad national and international debate about freedom of information."
CNN reported that Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos has now officially called for Langlois's release, saying the government will do whatever it can to get the French journalist home safely.
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"The Colombian government is willing to provide all the facilities so the release occurs as quickly as possible, but if you really want to be viewed well by the world, release him now and simply tell us where he is and we will go get him," Santos said during a state visit to Singapore, according to CNN.
Langlois's capture came just after a pledge from the FARC earlier this year to end its practice of kidnapping for ransom, according to The New York Times.
The rebel group released the last 10 soldiers and policemen hostages it held last month, GlobalPost previously reported. Some of them had been held for as long as 14 years.
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