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Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Ecuadorian president hails rescue of Colombian hostages

QUITO, July 4 (Xinhua) -- Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa said Friday he is satisfied with the rescue of former Colombian presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt and other hostages held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).

He made the remarks during his tour to the southern part of the country.

On the alleged link between the Ecuadorian government and the Colombian guerilla that triggered diplomatic row between the two countries, Correa said the problem is with Colombia, not Ecuador.

"Fix your problems without involving the rest of Colombia's neighboring countries. Till when we have to stand suspicions and will have to give explanations for others' issues," Correa said in a statement issued by the Ecuadorian Communications Ministry.

The diplomatic relations between Ecuador and Colombia severed in March after the Colombian military entered Ecuador's territory to chase Colombian rebels.

Correa also demanded that the FARC release all the hostages without condition.

On Wednesday, Colombian army rescued 15 hostages held by the FARC, including former presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt, three U.S. advisers and 11 Colombian soldiers in an "unprecedented" operation in the southern Colombian province of Guaviare.

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