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Car bomb explodes outside radio station in Bogotá

Car bomb explodes outside radio station in Bogota
Looking for evidence: Agents, from the police anti explosive unit, collect evidence at the scene of a car bomb explosion outside the building of Caracol Radio station in Bogotá, Colombia, Thursday, August 12, 2010. The car bomb explosion outside a major radio station shook Colombia's capital on Thursday, injuring six people. No deaths were reported.

A car bomb exploded early Thursday morning outside the building of national Caracol Radio in the capital city of Bogotá, causing serious damage and injuring at least nine people, local new reports said. President Juan Manuel Santos, who took office on Saturday, described the explosion as "a terrorist act," and said it was intended to create a climate of fear. Attorney-General Guillermo Mendoza said the attack was aimed at the radio station, during an interview with Caracol. "It is an act of intimidation against the media," Mendoza said without providing any specifics.

At least 110 lbs (50 kg) of explosives were detonated around 5:30 a.m., New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said quoting press reports. The explosion caused considerable damage in Caracol Radio's offices, but the station was able to remain on the air. The 12-story building also houses the offices of the Spanish news agency EFE, the Ecuadoran consulate, as well as several banks. EFE's offices were not damaged. The blast shattered windows in more than 20 buildings in the vicinity, the press said.

Bogotá Police Chief General Cesar Pinzon speculated that leftist guerrillas may have been responsible, the Associated Press reported. Pinzon said authorities were not sure who the intended target of the attack was.

"We condemn this attack and are concerned that it may have been a targeted attack on the media," said Carlos Lauría, CPJ's senior programme coordinator for the Americas. "We support a full and vigorous government investigation. We are concerned that the media could once again be caught in the middle of the Colombia conflict."

In Colombia's five-decade civil conflict, media facilities have been targeted by bomb attacks several times. The most recent car-bombing against a media outlet was in February 2005, when a car exploded outside the offices of RCN Television and Radio in Cali, the country's third-largest city.

Date posted: August 13, 2010 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 253