By Liliana Honorato
A video showing evidence that kidnapped Colombian journalist Elida Parra Alfonso is alive was broadcast on on Wednesday, August 1, on the national TV channel, Canal Caracol, according to Reporters Without Borders. The journalist, along with engineer Gina Paola Uribe, were kidnapped more than a week ago by the National Liberation Army (ELN in Spanish).
The two women did community work with the Bicentenario Oil Pipeline in Saravena, a town in Arauca, where they disappeared on July 24. On July 30, the ELN claimed responsibility for the kidnapping of the journalist and engineer.
In the video, the journalist requested national and international organizations to help free her and the engineer and asked for the Bicentenario Oil Pipeline not to forget them, reported the newspaper El Tiempo. “Kidnapping, the prohibition of freedom, is something that no human deserves and we want to be back with our families soon,” said the journalist, according to the radio Caracol.
Parra Alfonso is the second Colombian journalist kidnapped in 2012 by guerrillas, who are responsible for constantly threatening journalists in Colombia. At the end of April, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC in Spanish) kidnapped French journalist Roméo Langlois, who was freed about a month later.
In a statement, the Colombian Federation of Journalists warned the ELN that “with the retention of the journalist, freedom of expression is violated, impeding citizens from their right to receive information and her right of practicing her profession."
Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.