Colombia's President asks for international intervention after deadly explosion

Friday's blast had left 32 killed and 200 wounded, as fears of terror campaign rise.

President Alvaro Uribe, who has promised to crack down on the 40-year insurgency, Saturday claimed to the United Nations to give Colombia the same treatment as Iraq. Uribe made these declarations after visiting the place where before the bomb attack functioned the exclusive club "El Nogal", in an elite area of Bogota.

The late-night explosion blew debris on to a busy avenue, collapsing floors and starting a fire that burned for two hours. The car, which was carrying explosives, had been left in a car park on the third floor of the building. No one claimed responsibility for the attack which took place shortly after 8pm on Friday, but the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) had said several months ago it intended to attack Colombia’s elite. The rebels have recently brought their war, which has lasted four decades, from the countryside into the cities.

The attack has raised fears that the country’s rebels are making good their threats to attack the country’s ruling class. Therefore, Uribe made another attempt to internationalize the long- running conflict, as he has openly considered peace talks useless.

Alvaro Uribe had expressed such idea during the sworn in ceremony of the leftist President of Ecuador, Lucio Gutierrez. The Colombian Head of State thinks that country's guerrillas finance their activity thanks to the international consumption of drugs produced in the country.

"The world should not ask Colombia to tolerate terrorism; we need that the democratic nations of the world come to Colombia to help us fighting it", repeated Uribe.

However, Uribe will have to struggle hard to see his dream, a large-scale US military intervention, to become reality. There is an increasing opposition to such idea amid Colombia's powerful neighbors: Chavez's Venezuela and Lula's Brazil. They strongly rejected in several occasions all the attempts of US intervention into the Amazonian jungle.

The bomb attack was the second blow to hit Colombia in as many days. On Thursday, a light plane carrying minister of social welfare Juan Luis Londono and four other people disappeared on a domestic flight. On Friday, suspected rebels fired on a helicopter that was searching for the plane in the Andean Mountains of central Colombia.

Hernan Etchaleco

Photo (AP): Friday's explosion has triggered a national discussion about a possible US military intervention into the South American country

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Author`s name Olga Savka