At least seven Colombian policemen were assassinated this Friday in an ambush perpetrated in a rural area of the Huila department, in southwestern Colombia, confirmed the country’s National Police.
The attack, whose perpetrators have not been identified, took place around 2:30 p.m. on the outskirts of San Luisa village that is part of the rural area of Neiva, the capital of Huila, according to the authorities.
The policemen were going back to the police station to which they were attached after a day of work in the San Luis township when an “explosive device” was activated at the height of the Corozal village. After the explosion, the agents were attacked with rifle burstsaccording to information collected by local media.
The victims, who were initially believed to be eight, are two quartermasters, two patrolmen and three auxiliariesaccording to the National Police in a statement.
“I strongly reject the attack with explosives that killed 8 police officers in San Luis, Huila. Solidarity with their families. These events express a clear sabotage of total peace. I have asked the authorities to travel to the territory to take over the investigation,” Petro said on his Twitter account.
“The site is not so easily accessible, so there is an aircraft flying over there,” they confirmed to Eph police sources after the attack. Police also stated that “all operational deployment is arranged in the region with the purpose of locating, capturing and bringing to justice the material and intellectual authors of the crime, so that they face the full weight of the law”.
This is the first attack against the security forces since the president, Gustavo Petro, came to power, when the offensives against the public force were paralyzed through the so-called “pistol plan” promoted mainly by the criminal gang of the Clan del Golfo.
A total of 36 police officers were killed as a consequence of these attacks by the largest criminal gang in the country which, after the extradition to the United States of its leader, Dairo Antonio Úsuga, alias “Otoniel”, increased the attacks against the security forces, especially on the Atlantic coast and the northwest of the country.