The First Anti-Corruption Sentencing Court of La Paz sentenced former de-facto Bolivian President Jeanine Áñez to 10 years in prison in the ‘Coup d’état II’ case on Friday, June 10. In the case, Áñez stood accused of crimes of acting against the constitution and illegally assuming the presidency of the country in November 2019, following a right-wing civic-military coup that overthrew democratically elected socialist President Evo Morales. The court found her guilty of “breach of duties” and “resolutions contrary to the Constitution and the Law” in her capacity as the former second Vice President of the Senate. In addition to Áñez, eight former police and military officials also faced charges in the trial. Over 70 pieces of evidence and around 20 witness statements were presented.
Miguel Díaz-Canel, President of Cuba, Nicolás Maduro, President of Venezuela, and Evo Morales, Former President of Bolivia send messages of solidarity to the people of the United States and the organizers of People's Summit, an alternative to exclusionary Biden’s Summit of Americas.
Bolivia's President Luis Arce warned that he will not attend the next Summit of the Americas if the United States excludes Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela. “Consistent with the Bolivian Plurinational State's principles and values, I reaffirm that a Summit of the Americas, which excludes American countries, will not be a full Summit of the Americas. If the exclusion of sister nations persists, I will not participate,” Arce tweeted. “Bolivia bases its international relations on the diplomacy of the peoples, with inclusion, solidarity, complementarity, respect for sovereignty, self-determination, and collective construction of a culture of dialogue and peace,” he added. In the past week, President Joe Biden's administration confirmed that he would not invite Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela because these countries "do not respect" democracy.
It must be remembered that Latin America and the Caribbean was declared a Zone of Peace in 2014. A few days ago, the anniversary of signing of the Treaty of Tlatelolco for the prohibition of nuclear weapons was also celebrated. There is huge potential in CELAC and we have to make our own space, away from the OAS, away from the United States and Canada, which have other interests. Their priority is elsewhere in the world and where they begin to apply interventionist policies, the results are disastrous. We will have to ask the people of Libya how they are now, or the people of Iraq or the people of Syria, or remember what happened in Yugoslavia. It may not be too late. I think we are moving slowly. These processes are slow, but the goal is to have a strong CELAC.
October 20 Bolivia will mark two years since what became the preamble to a violent and bloody coup d’état against former president Evo Morales (2006-2019). On that day, as the people went to the polls to re-elect the indigenous leader, the most extremist fringes of the country’s right-wing began maneuvering from behind the scenes to overthrow the government. The story of what happened after Election Day is well known. The Organization of American States (OAS) insisted that Morales’ new victory was the result of widespread electoral fraud -although it had no evidence-, thus paving the way for the opposition to take over the Palacio Quemado, the government headquarters.
Bolivia’s Interior Ministry has revealed that Colombian mercenaries, who participated in the assassination of President Jovenel Moise in Haiti, entered Bolivia days before the 2020 election. Fernando Lopez, Defense Minister under Jeanine Añez, was in contact with mercenary groups, with whom he intended to carry out a second coup.
The small K’illi K’illi park sits at the top of one of the hillsides cradling the valley that is home to Bolivia’s administrative capital La Paz, providing a striking view of the city below. To the east lies Illimani, a towering, snow-covered mountain. Below and to the west is the tree-lined Plaza Murillo, home to the seat of government and the site of dozens of coups and countless protests. Across the valley, set on the sweeping plains of the altiplano, is El Alto, a booming home to millions of largely Aymara working-class people. The hills hold the rich past of this city in the clouds. Indigenous rebel Túpac Katari launched crucial assaults on Spanish-controlled colonial La Paz from K’illi K’illi during his army’s 1781 siege. After his brutal quartering by the Spanish, Katari’s head was put on display on this same hill to terrorize his followers.
We spoke to Bolivia’s Foreign Minister, Rogelio Mayta, who is leading the charge for a more democratic process of regional integration. The country is raising its voice against Luis Almagro, head of the Organization of American States, both for his role in the 2019 coup, and his wider political actions, on behalf of the United States, in the domestic affairs of member states.