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| 3/15/2010 12:00:00 AM

Colombia vote: Former FARC hostages run for Congress

Mrach 15--Six former FARC hostages – each held for years by the leftist rebel group – are running for Congress in Sunday's Colombia vote. Voters are choosing 102 senators and 166 representatives in the legislative elections.

After spending long years chained to trees and at the mercy of leftist rebels, most of Colombia’s former FARC hostages swore off politics when they were unilaterally released two years ago, saying they would dedicate themselves to their families and to making up for lost time.
 
But six of the former political hostages of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, have plunged back into politics, seeking seats in Congress in Sunday’s legislative elections. Some of the former hostages say they feel better prepared to represent voters after their experience with the “other Colombia.” Others say they’re just trying to pick up their lives where they left off.

Clara Rojas, who was campaign manager of then-presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt when the two were kidnapped in 2002, says she decided to run for a Senate seat in part to put the trauma of her kidnapping behind her. “I wanted to leave behind the role of victim, and to see what I can do to contribute to the country,” she says.
 
Read more here.
 
Semana International delivers news about Colombia in English. Find more in our home.
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