Colombian policeman killed in attack on checkpoint

Colombian policeman killed in attack on checkpoint

One policeman has been killed and at least six others injured in an attack on a police checkpoint north of the capital Bogota.

Police sources said the officer was shot dead by two assailants on motorcycles while he was on duty in the city's northern outskirts.

They then planted explosives on his body which they set off by remote control when other officers came to investigate.

The motive for the attack is not clear.

Officials said the assailants' original target may have been an electrical substation near the checkpoint in the sparsely populated area.


Power stations have in the past been attacked by the National Liberation Army (ELN), Colombia's second largest rebel group.

But the police said the attack could also be part of a larger plan by criminal gangs to target police officers.

Attacks on members of the security forces used to be relatively common in Colombia, with the ELN and the larger Farc rebel group both fighting the state, but they have become more rare.

The Farc signed a peace deal with the government in November, putting an end to more than five decades of armed conflict.

The ELN is due to start peace talks with government negotiators in January but the group has so far refused to release a former Congressman it is holding hostage, which the government says is a prerequisite for the talks.

There are also a number of powerful criminal gangs operating in Colombia, some of which have in the past called for their members to kill police officers.



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