A 2-year-old girl died on the weekend when she fell into a sewer in downtown Bogota, authorities said.

Carolina Sanchez, with the Bogota Fire Department, said that Michel Dayana Barrera was looking at some birds with her mother on Saturday when the fatal accident occurred on the central Bolivar Plaza, around which are located the Colombian Congress, the presidential residence, the executive branch headquarters, the Bogota City Hall and assorted judicial buildings.

Witnesses told local media that a soldier and a police officer who were nearby went down into the sewer - the manhole cover for which had been stolen - to try and save the child but their efforts were in vain because the waters flowing there swept the child away.

The girl's body was found about three hours later several blocks from the place where she disappeared.

Bogota Mayor Gustavo Petro said on Twitter that the child's lifeless body had been found and "our city is in mourning."

He added that "those who stole the manhole cover last night (Friday) where the girl fell in should be prosecuted for attempted murder."

The girl's mother, Briggit Ramirez, told reporters that her daughter was looking at some doves, took a few steps and fell into the sewer, whereupon she immediately called the emergency services for help. EFE