Jueves 27 de Junio 2024
BOLIVIA

Attempted coup in Bolivia thwarted

The general who led the insurrection was arrested and claimed he wanted to prevent Evo Morales´ return to power

Créditos: The Permanent Commission of the Congress of the Union strongly condemns the attempted coup d'état perpetrated by certain groups within the armed forces in Bolivia. Photo: @Argenpoirot
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Armored military vehicles and a group of soldiers surrounded and stormed the doors of the government palace in La Paz, Bolivia, in what the country's President described as an attempted “coup d'état”.

Bolivian President Luis Arce called on the people to mobilize against the military deployment and decided hours later to appoint a new military leadership, commanded by General José Wilson Sánchez, replacing the Army’s General Commander, Juan José Zúñiga, who led the mobilization of troops against the government.

"We cannot allow another coup attempt to take the lives of Bolivians," Arce emphasized in a televised address.

After the change in military command, the soldiers and armored military vehicles deployed in the plaza in front of the government headquarters withdrew from the area. Commander Zúñiga also departed.

Leyenda: 
Bolivia's Ambassador to Mexico, José Vladimir Crespo Fernandez, stated that the attempted coup d'état in his country had been thwarted, and he expressed gratitude for the unconditional support to President Luis Arce and the Bolivian people. Photo: Special

The coup-leading general was captured and taken to a police vehicle outside a military barracks. Before being detained, Zúñiga told journalists that President Arce had asked him to mobilize the troops to boost his image.

Zúñiga sought to prevent the return of former President Evo Morales to power in 2025, claiming that the military intended to "restructure democracy" in Bolivia and demanded the release of imprisoned opposition members.

Morales, a rival of Arce within the ruling Movement for Socialism (MAS) party seeking a return to power, denounced a "coup d'état." Six months ago, the Constitutional Tribunal disqualified Morales from the 2025 election.

"Without a doubt, today has been an unusual day in the life of a country that wants democracy," declared Arce after the military began withdrawing. He referred to "an attempted coup by soldiers who are staining the uniform, who are attacking our Constitution."

Arce appeared triumphant. "No one can take away the democracy we have won... We are confident we will continue and keep working," he stated.

Supporters of the President gathered in the plaza, shouting slogans in his favor, such as "Lucho, you are not alone."

 

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