Bolivian President Luis Arce and Movement to Socialism leader Evo Morales (REUTERS/Agustín Marcarian)

As the concern of the international community over the persecution of the Nicaraguan Church grows, in Bolivia the opposition denounces that the government of Luis Arce is taking the same path as the dictator Daniel Ortega.

former presidents Carlos Mesa (2003-2005) and Jorge “Tuto” Quiroga (2001-2002) criticized this Sunday the request of the Office of the Attorney General of the State (PGE) to the prosecution to investigate certain Catholic bishops for the events of the political crisis of 2019.

The two former presidents reacted to a memorandum, presented by the state entity on January 30, in which the public prosecutor is asked to call several members of the Episcopal Conference of Bishops to testify in the “coup d’état” affair. I”. Bolivia (CEB).

In a post on Twitter, Mesa claims that the ruling Movement for Socialism (MAS), the party of President Luis Arce and former President Evo Morales, he “imitates” the President of Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega.

“The MAS now seeks to persecute bishops who defend democracy and human rights. Political persecution in its crudest execution,” said Mesa, who is also the leader of the main opposition party in parliament, Comunidad Ciudadana (CC).

For his part, Quiroga said on the same social network as the president “Arce ‘Orteguiza’ trying to crucify the bishopswhom the MAS asked for mediation in 2019” and asked Pope Francis to “pronounce on the persecution of the Church in Bolivia”.

The “coup d’etat I” case, presented by a former pro-government deputy at the end of 2020, is based on the accusation of terrorism.

The former presidents of Bolivia, Carlos Mesa and Jorge "This one" quiroga
Former presidents of Bolivia, Carlos Mesa and Jorge “Tuto” Quiroga

For this figure, the former internal president is prosecuted by the means of common law Jeanine Anez and the leader of the opposition as well as the governor of Santa Cruz, Luis Fernando Camachoboth held in Bolivian prisons.

On several occasions, the Catholic Church has underlined its mediating role during the political and social crisis of 2019 which led to the resignation of then President Evo Morales and the establishment of a transitional government led by Áñez.

In 2021, the CEB submitted to Pope Francis a report on the role of the Catholic Church between October 2019 and January 2020 in which He “dismissed any accusation” of his work that was linked to “an alleged coup” against Morales.

This day, the newspaper The duty of Santa Cruz published some fragments of the request to the prosecutor’s office to declare those who in 2019 were Vice President of the CEB, Ricardo Centellas, the Episcopal Secretary, Aurelio Pesoaand former Auxiliary Bishop of El Alto, Young Aranasamong others.

The role of the leaders of the Catholic Church has been questioned by the ruling party, mainly due to a meeting at the Catholic University of La Paz during which various political leaders, including members of the MAS in the time, discussed the issue of presidential succession. .

For the government, the events of 2019 were a “coup” against Morales, while for the opposition the social protests were due to electoral fraud to promote Morales’ access to a fourth consecutive term.

The relationship between the Catholic Church and the government was strained due to criticism of the religious entity of the Morales government and which became even more distant in the administration of President Luis Arce due to the events of 2019.

With information from EFE

Continue reading:

The legal and economic nightmare that compromises the government of Luis Arce in Bolivia
Bolivian politicians have documents on alleged weapons sent and used in Peruvian protests
Jeanine Áñez has accused the Bolivian government of building a case against her daughter in order to attack her

Categorized in: