Spanish agricultural leader kidnapped in Colombia

SPANISH agricultural leader Jesús Quintana García, who heads the International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), has reportedly been kidnapped in Colombia while travelling in the vicinity of Toribío, in the southwest of the country.

Official sources have reported that Quintana was kidnapped on Sunday, December 6, by unknown persons, apparently at an illegal checkpoint, when he was driving his vehicle “between the department of Cauca and the department of Huila,” said the director of the Colombian police, General Óscar Atehortúa.

Spanish Defense Minister, Carlos Holmes Trujillo, declared that he hopes that Quintana will be released “as soon as possible”, and pointed out that “he is an international civil servant with diplomatic status who directs a tropical agriculture centre that is a pride for our country.”

The Spanish expert has been in Colombia since March 25 and is also the managing director for the Americas of the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT, the latter body based in Palmira, neighbouring city of Cali, capital of the department of Valle del Cauca.

Since arriving in Colombia, Quintana has stood out for promoting projects for the development of technologies that help food security and has been trying to help with the problems surrounding water resources in the Amazon.

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Written by

Matthew Roscoe

Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at