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Colombia to Temporarily Free Marxist Leader to Advance Peace Talks

Colombia's government has agreed to temporarily release a jailed Marxist rebel leader in an effort to spur peace talks aimed at ending four decades of violence.

Officials said Wednesday that Francisco Galan, of the National Liberation Army would be freed for three months to allow him to negotiate with civil society leaders about launching talks with the government.

Earlier, officials blamed rebels from a larger Marxist group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia for bombing electrical towers in the southwest. A similar attack Monday cut power to two million people in the area.

Meanwhile, the nation's Supreme Court has approved the extradition request for paramilitary leader Diego Murillo to face drug charges in the United States.

The request now goes to President Alvaro Uribe for his approval or rejection.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.