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Colombian hostage videos emerge

Sept 01--Colombian rebels have released videos of nine kidnapped soldiers and police officers, who appeal to the government to negotiate their release.

The footage shows the men, some of whom have been held for more than a decade, in the jungle or in front of a curtain.

The videos, apparently filmed in April, were handed over to Senator Piedad Cordoba, who has in the past helped to arrange hostage releases.

The rebels want to press the government to accept a prisoner exchange.

In the videos, the nine men greeted their families, told them not to worry and said that they still loved them.

All called on President Alvaro Uribe to negotiate a prisoner exchange.

One of the hostages, Corporal Jose Libio Martinez, made an emotional address to the son he has never seen.

The highest-ranking hostage in guerrilla hands, Luis Mendieta, who was promoted from police colonel to general in April, called for efforts to secure the return of "the living dead".
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