.- The Catholic Church in Colombia is urging the militant group FARC to begin the process of releasing the hostages it is holding and reminded the rebel group that the entire country “is pleading for this step to be taken.”
The secretary general of the Bishops’ Conference of Colombia, Bishop Juan Vicente Cordoba, revealed that conference's president, Archbishop Ruben Salazar, sent a letter to the leader of the FARC, Alfonso Cano, asking for details about the expected release of hostages.
In recent statements, Bishop Cordoba explained this letter has not yet been answered and that the bishops are awaiting a prompt response.
In comments directed to the FARC, Bishop Cordoba said, “Brothers of the FARC, we hope in you, we trust in you. We extend to you a gentle hand. Don’t leave us with our hand held out. Colombia is pleading for this step to be taken.”
He went on to say, “You are fighting for very profound values such as equity, justice and equality. We agree about the principle but not about the method. You have embraced class warfare, we democracy. We are united in the principle; don’t sink to a lower level.”
“We believe in your capacity to build a country in peace. If that is what you are seeking, then work together,” Bishop Cordoba told the rebels. “We accept you, and I can even say we love you, but take actions that will allow you to be loved by us,” he said.