Authorities defuse FARC bomb in Arauca

Armed forces in the Colombian department of Arauca deactivated a bomb early Thursday morning, thought to be the work of the FARC.

A vehicle with a load of plantains was left at about 1:30 AM Thursday on the road to the airport of the capital city, also called Arauca, across from the facilities of the 18th Brigade of the Colombian Army. Six of the car’s cylinders were filled with an explosive mix of ammonium nitrate-fuel oil and shrapnel.

Police say Martin Alonso Herrera Fontalvo, alias “Asdrubal,” was the driver of the car. Asdrubal is a member of the FARC’s 10th Front. He was captured trying to flee the city later that same morning, and is now in custody. The police had detained Asdrubal last year on guerrilla-related charges, but he was freed due to lack of evidence.

Authorities are also on the hunt for two FARC terrorists known as “El Electrico” and “Malmarido,” who are thought to be the bomb manufacturers. Two other FARC members, “Arcesio” and “Misael” are wanted for being the “intellectual authors” of the attack, and a reward of COP100 million has been offered for information leading to their capture.

Defense minister Gabriel Silva immediately went to Arauca following the thwarted attack to hold meetings about security in the area and assess the situation. He congratulated security forces on their work, and said that he worried that FARC was trying to influence upcoming congressional and presidential elections with the attempted car bomb.

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