So far, no one has taken responsibility for the kidnapping.
Sister Quesada said the kidnappers claimed to be jihadists. However, Fr. Edmond Dembele, secretary general of the Malian Bishops' Conference, acknowledged the possibility that the kidnapping was carried out by bandits who claimed to be jihadists to mislead investigators. This hypothesis is supported by the fact that the culprits stole the sisters' computers, money, and car.
Karangasso is in southeast Mali, removed from the areas where jihadist groups such as Al Qaeda operate, in the country's north.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="es" dir="ltr">La historia de la monja colombiana que estaría en manos de yihadistas <a href="https://t.co/0kyYIXEotv">https://t.co/0kyYIXEotv</a> <a href="https://t.co/D8uQA9SpeJ">pic.twitter.com/D8uQA9SpeJ</a></p>— Publimetro Colombia (@PublimetroCol) <a href="https://twitter.com/PublimetroCol/status/829468275444764673">February 8, 2017</a></blockquote>
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Fr. Dembele reported that the government of Mali "has mobilized the armed forces to patrol the area where Sister Cecilia was kidnapped. The people have mobilized to help in the search."
"We don't know who kidnapped her. The Civil Guard and the police are investigating. The bishops are also moving to obtain information in the area," the priest told the Vatican's Fides News Agency.