Captured guerrilla says ELN was responsible for journalist's abduction in February

    MONTREAL, June 6 /CNW Telbec/ - A member of the National Liberation Army
(ELN) guerrilla force, Manuel "Martin" Bonett De la Rosa, who was injured and
captured in a clash with the army on 2 June, has admitted to participating in
the 17 February abduction of journalist Mario Alfonso Puello, who works for
Radio Delfin, TV Norte and the regional daily La Noticia.
    Bonnett said Puello, who was kidnapped with two other people at a mock
checkpoint in the northern department of La Guajira on 17 February, is still
being held by the ELN's "Domingo Barrios Front", which operates in the region.
He and his two fellow captives are all in good health, Bonnett said.
    The motives for their abduction are still unknown. The departmental
authorities said at the time they thought the target might have been Aldo
Brito Carrillo, the rector of the Open and Distance University (UNAD), who was
in the same car as the other three but managed to escape at the last moment.
    The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the country's largest
guerrilla group, denied any involvement in the kidnapping 10 days afterwards.
    Reporters Without Borders hopes the ELN will hears its appeal for the
rapid release of Puello and the other two hostages. "By quickly releasing the
hostages, the ELN would give proof of its desire for peace," the press freedom
organisation said.

For further information:

For further information: Katherine Borlongan, Secretary General,
Reporters Without Borders, (514) 521 4111,,

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