Law Enforcement Investigating Multiple Leads in Deadly Attack on Bogotá Mall, Offering $30,000 USD Reward for Info
Law enforcement in Colombia are working on at least three potential leads into an attack yesterday on a high-end shopping mall in Bogotá that killed three women and injured several others, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said today.
He was clear that investigators did not want to share their theories surrounding the large explosion in a women’s bathroom at the Andino shopping center that detonated around 5 pm on Saturday, fearing that revealing information could disrupt the case. “In many cases, investigations have been hampered or failed due to giving out information that should not be given,” said Santos
Photo: Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos called for calm and unity today following yesterday’s attack that killed three people at the Andino mall in Bogotá. (Credit: Presidencia de la República.)
The president, who met today with Bogotá Mayor Enrique Peñalosa as well as the nation’s attorney general and police and military leaders, also said that they are offering a reward of more than $30,000 USD (100 million pesos) for anyone who can provide useful information about those involved in perpetrating the tragedy. He stressed the importance of uncovering as much information as possible in the immediate aftermath of the the explosion.
“The first days after an attack such as yesterday are essential,” said Santos today. “They are very important to guide the investigation and achieve results — achieve important progress — in determining the responsible culprits.”
The president, who was away from the capital when the blast went off, has also canceled a planned trip to Portugal in order to focus on the investigation. Santos had been scheduled to visit both Lisbon and France during four days in Europe this week, and he does still plan to head to Paris, where he will meet with recently elected President Emmanuel Macron.
The attack on one of the most upper-class neighborhoods in Bogotá has been met with a united front of condemnation from all sides of the political sphere, which is a rarity of late in a country that been vigorously divided over a controversial peace deal with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and a tax increase that were both enacted by the Santos administration last December.
“There is no bomb that can beat a united people,” said Santos on Father’s Day from the Andino mall in Bogotá. “There is no possibility that terrorism will bring down the Colombian people. On the contrary, we have had much experience with terrorism, and we have always forged ahead — and we are going to forge ahead.”
The National Liberation Army (ELN), which has been the most belligerent leftist guerrilla group over the past two years as FARC has moved toward peace, has also repudiated the attack and denied responsibility.