First photographs of Luis Diaz's father after being released by kidnappers in Colombia

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The Liverpool footballer's father was kidnapped almost two weeks ago.

The father of Luis Diaz has been safely released almost two weeks after being kidnapped in Colombia.

The Liverpool footballer’s parents were snatched by gunmen while buying watermelons at a service station in their home town of Barrancas, La Guajira, on October 28.

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His mother, Cilenis Marulanda, was left behind in a car as police closed in as part of ‘Operation Padlock’ and rescued, but his father Luis Manuel Diaz was taken away by men on motorbikes.

A major search operation by over 200 elite police officers and military personnel has been underway for nearly two weeks, focusing on the Perija mountain range and forests on the border of Colombia and Venezuela.

The father of Luis Diaz has been released by kidnappers in Colombia.The father of Luis Diaz has been released by kidnappers in Colombia.
The father of Luis Diaz has been released by kidnappers in Colombia. | Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images and @episcopadocol/x

In an update on the search last week, the Colombian government announced that guerrilla group ELN were behind the kidnappings. The rebels admitted responsibility during ongoing peace talks with government representative Otty Patiño.

The Episcopal Conference of Colombia have now confirmed that Mr Díaz has been rescued, sharing images and a statement on social media.

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The statement reads: "We thank God for the release of Mr. Luis Díaz! With him are already Mons. Francisco Ceballos, bishop of Riohacha and Mons. Hector Henao, delegate for Church-State relations, who formed the humanitarian commission in charge of facilitating his release."

Mr Díaz is now with members of the United Nations and Catholic church and will undergo a medical examination before being returned to his family.

Liverpool issued a statement ahead of Thursday Europa League match against Toulouse saying they were 'delighted by the news' and thanked everyone involved in securing his release.

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