Checking "Clara Rojas" on Google News, hoping that there will be some good news for her and all those kidnapped in Colombia. Clara was on the ticket with Ingrid Betancourt running for the presidency of Colombia on a Green Party ticket almost six years ago when they were kidnapped by the FARC while travelling through a demilitarised zone on the campaign trail.
Chavez is central to it all. The flamboyant left-of-centre President of neighbouring Venezuala waved off the rescue helicopters two days ago. Needless to say, film director Oliver Stone was beside him, to record the moment for posterity.
It's a cat and mouse game, with Venezuelan ex-Minister Ramon Rodriguez Chacin, direct representative of President Hugo Chavez acting as the go-between as the bearer of the co-ordinates to the pick-up point. He is reporting to the International Committee of the Red Cross, in order to to immediately execute the last phase of the Emmanuel operation, as Chavez called it, named after the name of Clara's three year old son, conceived and born while in captivity.
If Clara is released it might reduce tensions in the region and pave the way for the release of Betancourt and others kidnapped in Colombia.
Now there's a report coming through of rockets being fired at a Colombian plane at Neiva. Let's hope that there's good news for the start of 2008.