updated 07/21/2008 AT 6:00 AM ET
•originally published 07/21/2008 AT 8:40 AM ET
Latina superstar Shakira led an international day of protest Sunday demanding the release of hostages seized by leftist insurgents in Colombia.
Cries of “Libertad!” ( the Spanish word for freedom ) resonated at demonstrations in more than 40 cities – including London, Paris, Beijing, Miami, Sydney and New York – the AFP news agency reports.
After singing the national anthem at a parade presided over by Colombian President Alvaro Uribe, Shakira marked the nation’s independence day by performing a set in the city of Leticia, bordering the jungle.
The guerilla cadre Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) has kidnapped an estimated 700 hostages; as many as 2,000 more are thought to be held by the National Liberation Army, another leftist group.