Four policemen were killed on Tuesday in an attack on their patrol in the eastern Colombian state of Arauca, according to a National Police press release.
The policemen were patrolling a rural road and were killed when a roadside bomb exploded, followed by the sound of gunfire. One other policeman was injured and had to be rushed to the hospital to be operated on.
According to El Espectador newspaper, Minister of Defense Juan Carlos Pinzon alleges that the police were lured into an ambush by a phonecall and subsequently attacked by the ELN rebel group.
Colombian media has reported that both rebel groups, the ELN and the FARC, have been known to operate in the region and even killed oil workers there before; however, it is unproven who committed Tuesday’s attack.
The attack comes at a tense time in Colombia’s peace talks and presidential election. The FARC was practicing a ceasefire during the elections which was being honored close to 100%.
It remains unproven who the attackers were.