Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos Blames ELN Rebels for Bogota Blasts

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Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos Blames ELN Rebels for Bogota Blasts

File Photo: Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos. (Agence France-Presse)

Bogota:  Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos on Friday blamed leftist ELN guerrillas for two explosions that rocked Bogota and left 10 people slightly injured a day earlier.

"The indications are that those responsible are the ELN, the evidence so far is in this direction," the president said after a security meeting at his palace, accusing the ELN of trying to "provoke fear and cause terror."

Soon thereafter on Friday night, two devices containing propaganda leaflets related to ELN were detonated in downtown Bogota.

Police have arrested a man allegedly connected to the incident, national police chief Rodolfo Palomino told a press conference.

No one was injured in the explosions.

The National Liberation Army (ELN) is Colombia's second-largest guerrilla group, after the FARC, and is in preliminary peace talks with the government, though little progress has been made.

The low-intensity blasts Thursday may have been an attempt to influence the talks in some way, Santos said.

Between February and March, at least six minor blasts went off in different parts of the Colombian capital, leaving a dozen injured.

The explosions were blamed on a criminal gang that operated for the ELN.

 

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