Bolivia yesterday demonstrated the high degree of polarization it is in as groups of civilians linked to the Socialism Movement and anti-riot police cleared the streets of unions, civilians and other sectors in the As part of the open-ended strike that led to the repeal of Law 1386, the Strategy to Combat the Legitimation of Profits and the Financing of Terrorism.
The violence exercised against the blockers by members of the MAS was the common feature in Santa Cruz, Potosí, Oruro, Tarija, La Paz and Cochabamba and Beni. Despite the clashes, citizens, doctors, international transport companies and representatives from other sectors said they will continue the strike and mobilizations on the streets today.
Last week, Vice President David Choquehuanca, supported by the Unity Pact, warned at a press conference that social organizations would defend democracy in danger.
“They will use all the resources at their disposal that our democracy enables to defend economic stability, unity, our sovereignty, wealth and natural resources,” he said.
In this context, various MAS groups, led by leaders, the so-called self-appointed farmers run by regional authorities, and even undercover, at the request and approval of the authorities, opened the streets by the citizens.
The measure was carried out differently in the departments, more so in Santa Cruz, Potosí and Oruro.
In the eastern region, despite the peaceful build-up of blockades on various streets, police officers used force to break them down.
However, this process was also carried out by vigilante groups, in addition to militants led by leaders.
Videos were used to watch groups of hooded men in delivery trucks drive through the streets to lift the roadblocks and the use of heavy fireworks head-on against citizens in the sector despite avoiding the confrontation.
Potosí has also been the scene of violence promoted by government agencies.
Leaders and public officials condemned undercover agents, including the president of the departmental assembly, leading the peasant movements into the center of the imperial villa to face the people blocking the streets.
The department also denounced violence by masista groups against citizens protesting and demanding the repeal of Law 1386.
Conade officials said several people were injured.
In Tarija, the presence of people associated with masism who used violence and intimidation was also denounced.
In La Paz, in the southern zone, two groups of people were seen attacking each other with stones through video.
Beni stuck to the strike but they made it clear that the measure will be 48 hours.
Chuquisaca will mobilize this Tuesday.
Press workers attacked
On this Monday, too, media workers suffered aggression and intimidation in their work to inform citizens about the open-ended strike.
In Oruro, the press workers’ union denounced the fact that journalists were trying to remain silent in the face of the violent events in different parts of the city, as they were intimidated into their work.
“Given the constant threats from some people who dislike the work of journalists who only reflect on the events taking place (…) radical groups are trying to silence the work of the press,” it said in a statement.
The gassing of a journalist in Santa Cruz was also known.