Colombia: ELN Guerrilla group claims kidnapped Russian killed when trying to escape

Posted on September 2, 2017 • Filed under: Colombia, Terrorism, Tourist Killed

Euronews/Reuters NORTHWESTERN JUNGLES, Colombia By Helen Murphy and Luis Jaime Acosta – Colombia’s ELN guerrilla group said a Russian-Armenian citizen it held hostage for six months was killed in April while trying to escape, a startling admission that risks throwing current peace talks with the government into jeopardy.  In a rare interview, a commander of the National Liberation Army, Colombia’s last active guerrilla group, said that ransoms from kidnappings were necessary to keep its fighters in the field and that peace would be impossible without state funding to feed and clothe the rebels.     The ELN seized Arsen Voskanyan in November. The group claimed that he was collecting endangered, poisonous frogs in the jungles of the northwestern department of Choco and accused him of wanting to smuggle wildlife overseas. After his lengthy captivity, Voskanyan was shot when he grabbed a hand grenade in a bid to escape, according to the ELN commander. Read Article

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