August 28, 1997 in Nation/World

Guerrillas Release Colombian Candidates

Compiled From Wire Services

Leftist guerrillas released 31 political candidates they had kidnapped in central Colombia in an effort to disrupt nationwide October municipal elections, authorities said.

The candidates for mayor and city councils in towns in the troubled Magdalena Medio region, 200 miles north of Bogota, were released Tuesday by the National Liberation Army, said Ruben Dario Ramirez, Colombia’s anti-kidnapping czar.

The nation’s second-largest rebel group had warned the candidates to abandon their political bids or become targets for assassination.

It released 20 other candidates in the region last week. There was no explanation for the releases.

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