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FARC set to release hostages

April 2, 2012 at 10:39 AM

BOGOTA, April 2 (UPI) -- The Red Cross said it was assisting in the planned release of at least 10 hostages held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.

The International Committee of the Red Cross announced that two Brazilian helicopters landed in Colombia with a humanitarian commission set to receive at least 10 people held by the guerrilla group, known by its Spanish initials FARC. The ICRC said many of the hostages have been held for more than 10 years by FARC.

"The International Committee of the Red Cross is facilitating this operation after agreement between the parties involved," the organization said in a statement.

FARC claims that 10 hostages are the last of its government prisoners. In February, the group issued a statement saying it would "forbid the practice" of kidnapping and release the last of its prisoners.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos had said that while the FARC declaration was "important" it was an "insufficient step in the right direction."

Hundreds of civilians are being held by FARC in Colombia, CNN reports.

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