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COMECE asks EU leaders to help secure release of kidnapped Colombian bishop



Press Release - 12 November 2002 Following the kidnap on Monday 11 November of Bishop Jorge Enrique Jiménez Carvajal, Bishop of Zipaquirá (Colombia) and President of the Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM), the Secretary General of COMECE today asked European Union leaders to do whatever they can to help secure the safe and prompt release of Bishop Jiménez and Father Desiderio Orjuela, who was abducted with him.

In letters to Javier Solana and Per Stig Møller from the Council of the European Union, Romano Prodi and Chris Patten from the European Commission, and Pat Cox and Elmar Brok from the European Parliament, Mgr Noël Treanor said that Bishop Jiménez "has campaigned relentlessly for justice and peace both in his own country and in the wider world". Bishop Jiménez and Father Orjuela were kidnapped on Monday morning, apparently by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). In May 2002, CELAM and COMECE co-organised a Social Congress on "Latin America and the European Union: Together for the Global Common Good - The Contribution of the Church" in El Escorial, Spain in advance of the second EU-Latin America summit. Mgr Treanor also asked the EU leaders "to keep all those suffering from the ongoing violence in Colombia in your thoughts, prayers and actions". ENDS

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