Two children and two soldiers are killed by landmines in separate incidents at alleged FARC minefields within the central and northeastern departments of Antioquia and Arauca respectively, various media sources have reported.
The two children, aged 11 and 15, were walking home with their farmer in Toledo, northern Antioquia, following a visit to the family’s farm, when the explosion occurred after being accidently activated by one of the minors on the sidewalk of the highway, according to El Colombiano.
The 11-year-old died instantly despite the swift attendance of local troops, while the other child and his father were rushed to hospital in Toledo, where the 15-year-old later died of his injuries.
Army authorities have blamed the FARC’s 36th Front for laying the mine, leading the Army’s Fourth Brigade Commander General Alberto Jose Mejia Ferrero to label it “a treacherous attack against humble peasants, who have nothing to do with the armed conflict.”
The devastated family earn a living cultivating bananas and cassava and the mother and remaining daughter are now left to hope for the recovery of the 48-year-old father whom doctors where trying to stabilize late last night.
In a separate incident occurring in the municipality of Tame, in the northeastern department of Arauca, two soldiers were also killed by a landmine while patrolling the area, reported El Espectador.
The deaths of the two soldiers, aged 26 and 27, as well as the two children add to the some 9,000 victims who have perished as a result of landmines, while the supposed FARC perpetrators were recently announced by the army to be increasing their usage of the anti-personnel mines.