Arce’s Promise of ‘Unity’ Rings Hollow in Bolivia

Bolivia’s former interim president, Jeanine Anez, is escorted into a police station after giving a statement at the prosecutor’s office, in La Paz, Bolivia, March 13, 2021 (AP photo by Juan Karita).
Bolivia’s former interim president, Jeanine Anez, is escorted into a police station after giving a statement at the prosecutor’s office, in La Paz, Bolivia, March 13, 2021 (AP photo by Juan Karita).

The cautious optimism that greeted the election of Luis Arce as Bolivia’s president has abruptly turned to profound concern. Arce, the socialist technocrat who came to office in the midst of dangerously inflamed political divisions last year, had vowed to “rebuild the country in unity,” including by making the judiciary independent of politics. Yet he just had Bolivia’s previous president, Jeanine Anez, along with more than a dozen former officials, arrested and imprisoned on dubious charges of “terrorism,” “conspiracy” and “sedition” connected to the ouster of her predecessor, Evo Morales. “We will learn and we will overcome the mistakes we’ve […]

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