Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov

US citizen arrested on Bolivia hotel bombings

The blasts knocked down walls at two hotels in La Paz killing two people

The Bolivian police has arrested a male US citizen and a Uruguayan woman for being behind the Wednesday bombing of two small hotels in the center of La Paz that killed two people and left five wounded. According to the local police when the bombs exploded the hotels were occupied by government officials, which lead to suspects about a politically inspired terrorist attack.

La Paz prosecutor Jorge Gutierrez said the pair were arrested in the early hours of the morning in the city of El Alto, which borders La Paz, soon after the second blast. "Both were carrying cartridges of dynamite and detonators. The woman is Uruguayan and the man says he is from the United States. We are gathering information from immigration to establish when they entered the country," he told reporters.

The blasts knocked down walls at two hotels where government officials stay and scattered bricks and cement across a 60-meter radius, shattering windows in nearby buildings, a statement on the government Web site said. The force of the blasts indicated the bombs were probably made from C-4 plastic explosives, rather than dynamite, the statement said.

During a later official statement in the Eastern city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivian President Evo Morales said the blasts were “an attack on Bolivian democracy and indirectly accused Washington of being behind the terrorist attack. “The United States claims to fight terrorism, yet Americans come to put bombs in our hotels,'' said Mr. Morales before reporters.

The police force declared a state of emergency, reinforcing security at the La Paz airport, bus stations and power plants, in addition to patrolling the streets of the capital, Interior Ministry spokeswoman Sara Vargas said in La Paz.

Hernan Etchaleco

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