Bishops mourn the death of two police officers killed in terrorist attack at airport – Eurasia Review
By Walter Sanchez Silva
Bishop Víctor Manuel Ochoa Cadavid of the Military Ordinariate of Colombia expressed his sadness and solidarity following the terrorist attack of December 14 which claimed the lives of two policemen at Camilo Daza airport in the city of Cúcuta, located on the border with Venezuela.
“Great sadness and great sadness for what happened in Cúcuta, where two members of the national police fell: David Reyes and William Bareño,” Bishop Ochoa said in a December 14 statement to ACI Prensa , the CNA’s sister news agency in Spanish.
CNN en Español released a statement from Colonel Giovanni Antonio Madariaga of the Cúcuta Metropolitan Police Department which described the attack which took place between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. local time.
In a first explosion, a person carrying a bomb was killed. Two bomb squad officers then searched the area to locate and deactivate any other aircraft.
However, both were killed in a second explosion.
“They walk around the neighborhood and identify a suitcase. As they approach, taking all security measures, it explodes. Our two bomb squad technicians sacrificed their lives for the safety of people, ”said the colonel.
“At this time, we continue to collect all the physical evidence to identify how it was done, how they entered and which criminal and terrorist group is responsible,” he added.
The Civil Aviation Administration announced the suspension of operations at the airport and asked travelers to “stay in constant communication with the airlines.”
President Iván Duque repudiated on Twitter “the cowardly terrorist attack that took place in the city of Cúcuta” and said that “immediate actions are being coordinated to find those responsible for this attack”.
Bishop Ochoa told ACI Prensa that a few days ago, the deceased police officers received the National Police Excellence Award for their heroism, “because they had defused a very large bomb in the Catatumbo area and now they have intervened to deactivate the explosives at the airport. “
Catatumbo is a Colombian sub-region located in the northeast of the department of Norte de Santander, which stretches between the eastern mountain range of Colombia and Lake Maracaibo. It is made up of eleven municipalities and has historically suffered from the guerrillas.
What happened today, continued the bishop, “is very sad news for us. The military diocese extends all its solidarity to the women and children of these fallen men who lost their lives.
Bishop Ochoa said the funeral for officers Reyes and Bareño will take place and details are to come.
In a statement sent to ACI Prensa by the diocese of Cúcuta, Bishop José Libardo Garcés Monsalve also “vehemently repudiated these acts of violence against human life and the tranquility of civil society”.
“We call for reconciliation and the disarmament of the hearts of the violent who try to destroy the invaluable gift of life,” the prelate said in the statement.
“We urgently call to continue to build the path of peace, so that it is not violated by this kind of acts which bring more pain and uncertainty in this region of the country which is severely affected by the violence for years. “
The bishop also declared that he would accompany “with prayer the families of the members of the Public Force who today suffer the loss of their loved ones as a result of this act”.