At least 36 people were wounded Tuesday when an explosives-laden vehicle detonated twice at a military base used by Colombia’s 30th Army Brigade in the northeastern city of Cucuta near the border with Venezuela.
“We reject and repudiate this terrorist and vile act that sought to attack the soldiers of Colombia here in the brigade,” said Defense Minister Diego Molano at a press conference from the scene.
Molano said two people in a vehicle managed to enter the base after “impersonating public officials.”
The attack was carried out by the leftist rebel group the National Liberation Army, or ELN, and dissident groups of the demobilized Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), said Molano, who confirmed that 36 people were injured.
The ELN carried out a deadly attack on a police academy in Colombia's capital, Bogota, in January 2019 that left 23 dead.
President Ivan Duque announced that he had instructed Molano to visit the site of the attack.
“Because of the explosion of a vehicle inside the 30th Army Brigade in the city of Cucuta, I have instructed Defense Minister Diego Molano to go to the city and carry out an investigation that will allow us to clear up this unfortunate situation,” Duque said on Twitter.
Minutes later, Duque got on a plane and headed to Cucuta to take charge of the situation.
The bombing has stoked anxiety about a return to the violence that the country has experienced for decades.