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Rebel deserter helps free hostage in Colombia

Source : AP
Last Updated: Mon, Sep 10, 2012 20:38 hrs

Officials say a deserter from a Colombian guerrilla army has led an Ecuadoran hostage to freedom after two years in captivity.

The military says in a statement that the rebel led Orlando Sigifredo Ibarra Sarmiento on a four-hour walk to reach troops in southwestern Colombia. It does not identify the rebel from the National Liberation Army, but says the military had been in contact with him earlier.

Ibarra is a 39-year-old businessman who was seized on August 2, 2010, in the border city of Ipiales.

The National Liberation Army is the second-largest of the leftist rebel groups that have been trying to overthrow Colombia's government. It is believed to have at least 3,000 fighters.

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