Cuba and Norway: Rebels Free American
BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Colombia’s FARC rebels on Sunday freed an American they were holding since June, the governments of Cuba and Norway said.
The statement by the Cuban and Norwegian embassies in Bogota said that rebels have turned over 26-year-old Kevin Scott Sutay to a commission made up of representatives from their countries and the International Committee of the Red Cross in the nation’s south. Sutay was later delivered to U.S. government representatives at the airport in the Colombian capital.
Sutay had been in the country as a tourist when he was taken hostage on June 20 by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry welcomed Sutay’s release, and said the United States was “profoundly grateful” to the Colombian government for its efforts to secure his freedom.
Kerry also individually thanked Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, the International Committee of the Red Cross, and the governments of Norway and Cuba, as well as the Rev. Jesse Jackson, for pushing for Sutay’s release.
Editor’s Note: Former CIA officer Brian Latell has stated that Cuban Intelligence has strongly supported the FARC since the 1960s, but the “availability of massive amounts of Venezuelan money” during Hugo Chavez’s presidency triggered considerable growth in the depth and bredth of Havana’s support. His assessment is echoed by Lieutenant General Ion Mihai Pacepa — the highest ranking intelligence officer to ever defect from Communist-controlled Romania – who claimed that by the mid-1970s, both the Cuban and Romanian foreign intelligence services worked jointly with the FARC.