LONDON, UK – Romeo Langlois, the French journalist released from captivity in Colombia on Wednesday after being kidnapped for 33 days by FARC rebels, is on his way back to France bearing a letter from his captors addressed to newly-elected French President Francois Hollande.
According to the Agence France Presse, Langlois told a news conference organized by the French Embassy in Bogota on Thursday that the rebels make an appeal to “friendly countries, in particular European ones” to “help achieve a negotiated way out” of the violence in Colombia in the letter, which also contains “public apologies.”
The 35-year-old reporter is due to be reunited with his family in Paris on Friday. He was handed over in the south of the country on Wednesday to a delegation comprising members of the International Committee of the Red Cross, French envoy Jean-Baptiste Chauvin and peace activist Piedad Cordoba, France 24 reported.
More from GlobalPost: French journalist Romeo Langlois freed by FARC rebels in Colombia
Langlois was abducted in April during a rebel attack on a Colombian army unit he was accompanying in order to film a documentary on the destruction of narcotics laboratories in the Caqueta region.
The FARC, which took up arms in 1964 and which authorities say finances itself by selling cocaine, has an estimated 9,000 fighters, according to the BBC.
Speaking to reporters on Wednesday after his release, Langlois said the rebels had treated him well during his captivity, and stressed the importance of covering the ongoing violence between government forces and the FARC, The Daily Telegraph reports.
"I didn't need this experience to know the Colombian conflict or to know the rebels. I've been in this a long time," Langlois said. "What I take from it is the conviction that one must continue covering this conflict."