the washington post

Colombia hands over captured Ecuador troops

Aug 14--Colombia on Sunday released 11 Ecuadorean troops a day after they were seized in Colombian territory at a time of heightened tensions between the Andean neighbors, authorities from both countries said.

The two officers and nine soldiers, caught 300 yard/meters from the frontier in Putumayo province on Saturday, were turned over to the Ecuadorean military at the border.

Ecuador's Defense Minister Javier Ponce said the men were unarmed when they crossed the Putumayo River, which separates the countries along a jungle frontier.

"They crossed over to the other side of the frontier to buy some fish. Naturally they were detained by the Colombian armed forces," Ponce said. "Everything is calm. They were not armed and now they are back in the country."
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