A senator who lost her seat in Congress after brokering deals with leftist rebels to free hostages has fled Colombia amid death threats, media outlets said.

Piedad Cordoba left the country on Thursday, according to those accounts.

The activist and former legislator received telephone death threats and said she was being followed.

Cordoba does not plan to be away from Colombia for long, the media said, and will likely return immediately if she receives a positive response from the Andean nation's two main rebel groups to her proposal for peace talks and additional prisoner releases.

The erstwhile senator said she left the country on the advice of friends and family who urged her to minimize the time she spends in Colombia.

Cordoba said several weeks ago that her daughter, Natalia Maria, left the country in the face of death threats and was continuing her university studies via Internet.

Piedad Cordoba's departure coincided with an appearance in Congress by former President Alvaro Uribe to deny any part in extensive illegal spying during his 2002-2010 tenure.

Cordoba was among the targets of illegal wiretaps and surveillance by Colombia's DAS security service, which reports directly to the office of the president.

In September 2010, the Colombian Inspector General's Office expelled Cordoba from Congress and banned her from holding public office for 18 years after concluding she "collaborated" with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC.

Cordoba helped arrange the FARC's release of more than a dozen captives, including politicians and members of the security forces.