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Kidnappers Free Guatemalan Central Bank President - 2002-03-01

The president of Guatemala's Central Bank has been released Thursday after a three-day kidnapping ordeal.

Three days after the kidnapping of Lizardo Sosa, the president of Guatemala's Central Bank, he is free and back at home with his family. Officials had no immediate comment on the circumstances of his release.

The kidnapping of the respected and high ranking government official sent shock waves across the nation.

It has also sparked a host of theories. Some have speculated that the kidnapping had political motivations. Some say it could have been an act of vengeance for actions Mr. Sosa has recently taken or been orchestrated to obtain sensitive financial information. Others maintain the kidnapping could have been part of an attempt to destabilize the current administration.

Kidnappings are common in many lawless areas of Latin America. Yet there have been no politically motivated kidnappings in this Central American nation in over two decades.

During Guatemala's 36-year civil war numerous kidnappings of government officials were attributed to guerrilla groups. Guatemala's civil war ended in 1996 with the signing of a peace accord.