The Colombian ELN (National Liberation Army) guerrillas are expected to release this Tuesday the father of Liverpool footballer Luis Diaz, whom they have held hostage since October 28, said an executive negotiator in Colombia.
His release "must take place today (...), because the last obstacle, a deployment of soldiers which made the process difficult", has been removed, Otty Patino, the chief negotiator of the government.
On Monday, the head of the anti-kidnapping group of the armed forces, Colonel Giovanni Montanez, assured that the troops involved in the search for the footballer's father had “repositioned” themselves in order to facilitate the release of the hostage. “There are no more excuses. We hope that this release will take place today,” insisted Mr. Patino.
The Liverpool striker's father and his wife were kidnapped on October 28 from a gas station in Barrancas, the family's hometown, near the border with Venezuela (north-east), by armed men traveling a motorcycle. The footballer's mother was released the same day. More than 200 police officers have since been mobilized to undertake searches in this region.
On Sunday, the ELN announced in a press release that this military presence prevented "the rapid and safe execution of the liberation operation" of a hostage kidnapped "by mistake", according to the guerrilla leader who spoke the day before.