The FARC is releasing three hostages into Hugo Chávez’s custody—more specifically, Venezuelan planes, but Chávez was the key figure. The FARC’s decision came soon after Alvaro Uribe had given Chávez the boot, so it seems timed to make Uribe look bad. Most news stories on the topic do not mention a quid pro quo, or say only that the FARC wanted to show its affinity for Chávez. No prisoner swap has been announced up to now.
I find this a little strange. It is reasonable to argue that this is a symbolic move by the FARC to make sure Chávez stays in the picture and embarrass Uribe, but why do they not make that more clear? I went to the FARC’s website, which does not even mention the situation at all. Maybe it is a multi-step process that eventually will include release of FARC members in Colombian prisons, but everyone is keeping mum.