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NGOs in Columbia

After the Betancourt rescue in Columbia, a few eyebrows were raised when it was revealed that the rescuers had claimed that they were from an NGO and were removing the hostages to another location on behalf of the kidnappers' organisation, FARC. What, they wondered, does the kidnappers' ready acceptance that an NGO was assisting them in this way tell us about the role of NGOs in the country?

The headline currently running on the BBC website is that the President of Columbia has apologised that one of the rescuers was wearing Red Cross insignia. Does this mean that the rescuers claimed to be from the Red Cross and that the kidnappers accepted this?

If true, the excrement could soon be hitting the airconditioning.

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Reader Comments (2)

Well as Helen
points out, there is speculation that the "rescue" was a fake:

"a number of “highly regarded” European media outlets have been suggesting on the basis of “reliable” but unnamed sources that the whole operation was a front and that the hostages, in actual fact, were ransomed by the Colombian government."
Jul 17, 2008 at 12:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterTDK
The valiant Red Cross, Google' Italian red cross, Iraq' and see how the Ambulances were used to ship explosives, terrorists, bombers and all things nasty,
but then we must ship our used clothing to Africa, after all we don't want them to start a clothing factory in Africa and put people to work, that is what keeps the red cross in business.
Aug 14, 2008 at 2:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Chappell

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