Bogotá, Nov 5 (EFE).- The guerrilla of the National Liberation Army (ELN) affirmed this Sunday that the release of the father of soccer player Luis Díaz, kidnapped by that group, has been delayed due to military operations in the Barrancas area, in the Caribbean department of La Guajira.
“The area remains militarized, they carry out overflights, disembark troops, broadcast, offer rewards and an intense rake operation. This situation does not allow the execution of the liberation plan quickly and safely, where Mr. Luis Manuel Díaz is not at risk” said the ELN’s Northern War Front in a statement released tonight.
The head of the ELN, alias “Antonio García”, acknowledged this weekend that said front was the one that kidnapped the father of the Liverpool and Colombian team player on August 28 in the town of Barrancas, where the family lives. and although he admitted that it was a “mistake” to have done it to obtain money for his ransom and promised to release him, that has not happened yet.
In its statement today, the ELN also points out that since last November 2, when they announced the intention to release Luis Díaz’s father, they began the process “to do it as soon as possible” but they want to “avoid incidents with official forces.” “.
Since the kidnapping of Mr. Luis Manuel Díaz became known, some 300 men from the Colombian Army and Police have been searching for him by land and air in Barrancas and its surroundings, an area that borders Venezuela.
Luis Díaz, who this Sunday scored the goal of Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with Luton Town in the English league in the 95th minute and celebrated it with the message “Freedom for Dad” printed on his shirt, issued a statement in which He begs the ELN for his father’s freedom.
“I ask the ELN for the prompt release of my father and I ask international organizations to intercede for his freedom,” he said in a statement released on his social networks.
The striker added: “Every second, every minute our anguish grows; my mother, my brothers and I are desperate, anguished and without words to describe what we are feeling. This suffering will only end when we have him back home.”
“We understand the anguish of the Díaz Marulanda family, to whom we tell that we will keep our word to release him unilaterally as soon as we have security guarantees for the development of the liberation operation,” added the ELN.
This guerrilla is in peace negotiations with the Colombian Government, with which it also has a 180-day bilateral ceasefire in force that began on August 3. EFE