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7/23/2014 1:21:00 PM
Bomb damages door of historic church in Santiago, Chile
Catholic News Service

SANTIAGO, Chile — A bomb exploded at the front of historic Santa Ana Church early July 22, causing damage to the front door but no injuries.

Police officials said the bomb -- made of gas cylinders, a bottle with fuel and a timer --was planted by unknown people who left the mechanism inside of a trash bag.

Police found pamphlets mentioning two Chileans imprisoned in Spain last year for leaving a bomb in the Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar in Zaragoza.

"Our insurrectional action is a supportive gesture to our buddies Francisco Solar and Monica Caballero, kidnapped in Spain," said the flyer.

Solar and Caballero also were convicted of planning an attack against the monastery of Montserrat, in the Barcelona region.

Father Lionel de Ferrari, a priest at Santa Ana, called the attack against the church "an irrational act. I can't imagine what is going on inside of the head of those people."

The church, built in 1806, was declared national monument in 1970.

Hours after the explosion at Santa Ana Church, Chilean police deactivated another explosive device in downtown Santiago, near a kindergarten and close to the house of an official of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Chilean Interior Minister Rodrigo Penailillo said "the groups that are using bombs ... deserve a major punishment from the citizens and our country, and that's why we will take the pertinent legal actions."

The Archdiocese of Santiago called the bombings acts of intimidation "that generate an atmosphere of distrust that Chile does not deserve."

In a statement, it said: "We live in a democratic society where all the actors have their place to express their ideas. Violence cannot be validated."

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