Colombia

Explosion rattles Colombia’s capital, injuring dozens

Explosion rattles Bogotá, one policeman killed

An explosion in the center of Colombia's capital killed a police officer and injured more than two dozen others, according to media reports and eyewitnesses.
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An explosion in the center of Colombia's capital killed a police officer and injured more than two dozen others, according to media reports and eyewitnesses.

An explosion in the center of Colombia's capital killed a police officer and injured more than two dozen others, according to media reports and eyewitnesses.

At about 10:30 a.m. a homemade bomb hidden beneath a sidewalk grating near Bogotá's bullring exploded, injuring several riot police who were gathered there ahead of the final bullfight of the season.

A dislodged traffic light box lies in the street of La Macarena barrio after a homemade bomb exploded near the Santamaria bull ring in Bogota, Colombia, Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017. The artefact was detonated just a few hours before a scheduled bullfigh

The bullfights, which were resumed this year after a four-year hiatus, have been the focal point of sometimes violent animal-rights protests. But it was unclear if Sunday's bombing was related to the event.

The explosion took place in the La Macarena neighborhood, known for its restaurants and cafes and popular with tourists. The blast was heard for several blocks and shattered windows in nearby apartments. The bomb had been planted just yards from the newly opened EL Pit hostel.

http://www.eltiempo.com/bogota/explosion-cerca-a-la-plaza-santamaria/16823349#ooid=lzbXJ1OTE6Hoz1qkMBuOxr3A2fts9bJA

Juan David Gonzalez, part owner of El Pit youth hostel, told The Associated Press his two dozen guests were shaken by the blast but otherwise unaffected.

“We were all inside having breakfast when we heard the blast. Everyone was in shock but luckily nobody inside was hurt,” Gonzalez told the AP. El Tiempo newspaper reported that some foreigners may have been injured.

Mayor Enrique Peñalosa identified the dead officer as John Herrera. Earlier, the city government said on Twitter that 31 people were injured, two of them seriously.

This report was supplemented with material from The Associated Press.

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