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Bolivia’s ex-interim president arrested as political tensions reach new highs



Bolivia's ex-interim president arrested as political tensions reach new highs


The government minister, Carlos Eduardo del Castillo del Carpio, confirmed Áñez’s arrest. At least two of the former ministers have also been arrested, according to state channel Bolivia TV.

CNN has not been able to access the base of the charges through the prosecution, but Áñez posted on his Twitter account images of what he says are the six pages of the arrest warrant, which includes allegations of “terrorism.” , “conspiracy” and “sedition.”

In a series of tweets, Áñez said: “In an act of abuse and political persecution, the MAS [Movement Towards Socialism] The government has ordered my arrest. ”He added:“ He is accusing me of taking part in a coup that never happened. My prayers for Bolivia and for all Bolivians. “

Political tensions in Bolivia have been high since the disputed 2019 elections, in which former President Evo Morales was declared the winner, but international watchdogs alleged the results were fraudulent and annulled. the elections. Morales, who led the country for nearly 14 years as the first indigenous president, says he was ousted from a coup.

Áñez was interim president for less than a year and promised to hold a new presidential election, which took place in October 2020 after several postponements. Luis Arce, the MAS candidate supported by Morales, won a resounding victory. After Maple’s victory, Morales returned to Bolivia in November after spending nearly a year in exile in Argentina.

“The perpetrators and accomplices of the dictatorship that looted the economy and attacked life and democracy in Bolivia must be investigated and punished,” Morales wrote on his official Twitter account on Saturday.

José Miguel Vivanco, director of the Americas Division of Human Rights Watch, said Saturday that “arrest warrants against Añez and his ministers do not contain any evidence that he has committed the crime of” terrorism, “” adding “to it. reason, they generate well – it founded the doubts that it is a process based on political reasons “.

“We urge our friends and neighbors in Bolivia to uphold all civil rights and due process guarantees of the American Convention on Human Rights and the principles of the Inter-American Democratic Charter,” said Julie Chung, Acting Deputy Secretary of the Office of the U.S. State Department Western Hemisphere said Saturday on its official Twitter account.

In addition to political tensions, Bolivia is also fighting the coronavirus pandemic. The country, one of the hardest hit in the region, has so far recorded more than 250,000 cases and nearly 12,000 deaths, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University.