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De Facto Government Issues Decree Granting Impunity to Bolivian Police and Armed Forces

De Facto Government issues decree granting impunity to Bolivian Police and Armed Forces

Originally published: Translated by Internationalist 360 (November 16, 2019)

After the coup d’état forged against former president Evo Morales, the self-proclaimed interim president Jeanine Añez returned the favour to the Armed Forces with a decree that allows them to repress regardless of whether that action violates the law. She also made available the entire state apparatus in case it is “required”.

The authors of the #GolpeDeEstadoEnBolivia govern with decrees, without in the Legislative and supported by arms and bayonets of Police and Armed Forces. They enacted a DS that leaves the military institution exempt from criminal responsibility. It is a carte blanche of impunity to massacre the people.

On 15/XI/1781 the Spanish yoke executed Tupac Katari for asking for freedom. On 15/XI/2001, Tuto Quiroga murdered 3 coca growers for claiming sovereignty. Yesterday, 15/XI/19, the dictatorship of Mesa, Camacho y Áñez killed 12 brothers for demanding democracy. History repeats itself.

While the humble people cry out for peace and dialogue, the de facto regime of Camacho, Mesa and Añez, represses with tanks and bullets. Since they were self-appointed, they have already caused 24 deaths; yesterday, 12 in Sacaba. All indigenous brothers. That is the true dictatorship that massacres without mercy.

The de facto government that usurped power in Bolivia has freed the Armed Forces to act without having to answer for their crimes. The number of dead is growing. The Argentine government remains silent. The OAS endorses . @mbachelet and the UN must intervene. #BoliviaGolpeDeEstado

To offer impunity for the massacre of 24 brothers, the de facto government uses Carlos de Mesa’s DS 27977, an accomplice to the coup. But that DS was declared unconstitutional for equating civil conflicts with war situations. The Armed Forces are not exempt from their responsibility

While the denunciations of murders and human rights violations in Bolivia are raining down, the de facto government’s decree gives the Armed Forces the green light to meddle in internal security, repress mobilizations against the coup d’état and be “exempt from criminal responsibility”. That grants impunity to those who commit crimes that violate national legislation or international human rights law.

The decree also makes the entire state apparatus available to local and national security forces. According to the text, “all public and private organizations and institutions of the State, according to the needs, must provide the required support to the military and police forces”.

In spite of the lack of specifications, it is understood that in this point they are granted access to intelligence services, the necessary budget for equipment, and the information and services that the ministries possess.

The most serious point of the “supreme decree” lies in article three, which explicitly gives the Army carte blanche to repress regardless of whether such action violates the law.

“supreme decree” lies in article three“Personnel participating in operations to restore internal order and public stability shall be exempt from criminal liability when, in compliance with their constitutional functions, they act in legitimate defense or in a state of necessity,” the text adds.

According to information from foreign media, this requirement would have been one of the conditions that the Armed Forces placed on the de facto government to support it.

The “supreme decree” was signed by Áñez and eleven of his ministers, among them the minister of Communication, Rozana Lizarraga, who implemented the figure of “sedition” for the international press that speaks of “coup d’état” in Bolivian territory.

The Minister of Government, Arturo Murillo, also initialled the coup, and calmly announced in a press conference that the interim government was launching a “hunt” against opponents. “We are going to hunt Juan Ramón Quintana, Raúl García Linera and also people from the FARC, Cubans, Venezuelans who are living here,” she said.

During the 26 days of the conflict, we witnessed serious acts of violence that affected the integrity of more than 542 people and the death of 18, 14 of them in the context of the joint interventions of the Bolivian Police and the Armed Forces. https://t.co/Qn1RdPn3R4
– Defensoría Bolivia (@DPBoliviaOf) November 16, 2019

In Cochabamba, citizens surround the coffins of those killed in the repression of Sacaba.

In Cochabamba, citizens surround the coffins of those killed in the repression of Sacaba.

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