At least 20 dead in car bomb attack at Colombia police academy

At least 20 people were killed Thursday after a car bomb detonated in the Colombian capital of Bogota, according to the country’s National Police.

Police said 68 others were injured in the blast, which occurred outside the Gen. Santander National Police Academy.

A high-ranking police official told CNN that the explosion appeared to be the result of a suicide attack.

The perpetrator, identified as José Aldemar Rojas Rodríguez, also died in the attack, police said in a statement.

Attorney General Nestor Humberto Martinez said Rojas Rodriguez allegedly had approximately 80 kilograms of explosives when he entered the police academy forcibly. Rojas Rodríguez rammed a vehicle onto the grounds of the academy at full speed and ignored calls to stop, according to police.

CNN affiliate Cablenoticias showed the area outside the police cadet school cordoned off.

President Ivan Duque condemned the attack as terrorism and vowed to bring the perpetrators to justice.

He later visited the scene, where he ordered the police and armed forces to “determine who the people behind this vile attack are.”

He also proclaimed a three-day period of mourning.

“From the moment of the events we have provided assistance and accompaniment to families. To all of them I send my love, my gratitude,” he said.

Both Duque and the attorney general said an investigation is underway to identify any others behind the attack but did not provide further details.

One of the police cadets killed was a 21-year-old woman from Ecuador who was studying at the academy, Ecuador President Lenín Moreno said.

The US Embassy earlier issued a warning on its official Twitter account to Americans in Bogota, referring to a “security incident” and advising people to monitor local media and police sources for more information.