• Colombia, May 23, 2018

    The body of a kidnapped Argentine woman, working as a tour guide, was discovered in the municipality of Corinto, located in the municipality of Corinto in the southwestern Cauca department. The woman, Berenice Blanco, was kidnapped by armed gunmen who identified themselves as members of he Sixth Front of the former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerilla group. She was kidnapped along with two Israeli tourists while visiting a marijuana cultivation field in the area on 19 May. While the Israeli nationals were subsequently released seven hours later, the perpetrators continued to detain the Argentine woman in demand of a US$100,000 ransom from her family in Argentina. The deceased reportedly worked for a company that offers tours of marijuana cultivation areas in southwestern Colombia. (timesofisrael.com, 26 May 2018)

  • Colombia, May 19, 2018

    Two Israeli backpackers, Omer Yefet and Gal-El Yaakov, both 22 on a post-army trip to Colombia were kidnapped and held for seven hours by a group of gunmen. The two were released after their female tour guide convinced the gunmen that with only US$85 in their pockets they could not meet the 500 million pesos (US$1.7 million) ransom they were planning to demand in return for their release. While the gunmen let the two go, they kept the tour guide claiming that the money by the tour company that employ her owed them money. Colombia has become a popular destination for discharged Israeli soldiers since Marxist guerrillas laid down their weapons and signed a peace deal with the government and since the country both legalized medical cannabis cultivation and decriminalized small-scale personal cultivation and recreational use of the drug. But a few gangs are still active in certain areas, among them the mountains around Cali, living off money taken from businessmen and foreigners, including tourists. (timesofisrael.com, 23 May 2018)