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Colombian Armed Group Calls Off ‘Actions’ After Bomb Blasts

An armed group engaged in peace negotiations with the Colombian authorities on Friday introduced a right away cessation of all “offensive actions” after two automotive bombs in as many days killed two folks and injured a number of others.

The so-called Central Common Workers (EMC) — a dissident faction of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) that disarmed in 2017 — stated in an announcement it had ordered “all fronts, columns and firms” to “droop offensive actions all through the nationwide territory in opposition to the safety forces.”

The cessation will take speedy impact and till a ceasefire agreed with the federal government takes impact on October 8, stated the EMC, which claimed the primary of the 2 bombings however not the opposite.

The EMC announcement got here simply hours after a automotive bomb exploded outdoors a police station, injuring 5 civilians, in Jamundi within the Valle del Cauca division the place rebels are preventing troopers engaged in a clampdown on drug trafficking.

“Reprehensible assault in Jamundi,” President Gustavo Petro wrote on X, previously Twitter, describing it as a reprisal motion.

“We proceed to have an effect on unlawful economies and the response is acts of violence,” he added, vowing that the state “is not going to yield.”

A police assertion stated the 5 injured folks had been all civilians. One was in a critical situation.

The bomb broken the facade of the police station and 5 properties within the neighborhood.

Protection Minister Ivan Velasquez pointed the finger on the EMC.

“We’ve got needed to go meter by meter, we’ve got taken trenches, in some locations there was hand-to-hand fight” he stated of the continuing operation in opposition to drug trafficking within the space.

“It’s clear that the EMC is making an attempt to… distract, to generate stress somewhere else so that we’ll cease this operation, which we aren’t going to cease,” the minister instructed Caracol Radio.

‘A Mistake’

On Wednesday, one other automotive bomb focusing on a police station in the identical area, killed two civilians.

“We acknowledge as a mistake the imprecision on this navy motion through which two civilians had been killed and 5 injured,” stated the EMC assertion. It didn’t point out Friday’s explosion.

Wednesday’s assault got here only a day after Bogota and the EMC introduced they’d maintain peace talks from October 8 and observe a 10-month ceasefire beginning on the identical date.

The EMC is made up of former FARC fighters — about 3,500 in keeping with official information — who rejected the 2016 peace settlement between the federal government and the now-dissolved Marxist insurgent group.

It has steadily elevated its presence in territories previously occupied by the FARC and largely deserted by authorities forces.

Velasquez stated about three-quarters of the EMC’s funding comes from drug cultivation in southwestern Colombia, the world’s largest cocaine producer.

Petro took workplace final August with a vow to carry “whole peace” to a rustic battered by a long time of civil battle between the state and numerous left-wing guerrilla teams, right-wing paramilitaries, and drug traffickers.

Bogota is in talks with the EMC and different armed teams.