An opportunity for Evo…

Will he take it? Story from Aporrea:

27 years after the bloody coup d’etat of Luis Garcia Meza, relatives of the victims are demanding that President Evo Morales declassify the archives of the State, the armed forces and the police, and demand that the criminals no longer be hidden “in the apparatus of power.”

Human rights activists presented the Bolivian congress with a law project proposing the opening of those secret archives, along with the creation of a Commission for Truth and Justice in order to clarify facts and responsibilities concerning the violation of human rights between 1970 and 2005.

They referred to those actions “imputable to governments, constitutional and unconstitutional” which, according to records, amassed more than 10,000 victims of human rights violations, most of them during the military dictatorships of the 1960s and 70s.

The initiative comes from the People’s Ombudsman, the Permanent Assembly for Human Rights of Bolivia, and other organizations, as a reminder that the Garcia Meza coup was part of Operation Condor, which co-ordinated the dictatorships of the Southern Cone as of the early part of 1971.

A government by, of and for the people “must do away with the impunity of military assassins and torturers”, who killed 96 persons and tortured and disappeared 26, said Olga Flores, sister of the late parliamentary deputy Carlos Flores Bedregal, who fell victim to the same outbreak of violence in which the military shot dead the socialist leader Marcelo Quiroga Santa Cruz in front of the Bolivian Workers’ Centre, during the Garcia Meza dictatorship.

On the 17th of July, 1980, Garcia Meza overthrew Lidia Gueiler and prevented the elected president, Hernan Siles Zuazo, from taking office.

Even though Garcia Meza is imprisoned at Chonchocoro for 30 years, his accomplices are still free. But the family of Carlos Flores has been at work since 1999 seeking justice for his killers, and persist in this despite numerous death threats.

Translation mine; links added.

This is a golden opportunity for Evo to really shine as a human rights leader in the region, and who knows what will happen if he does? A lot of previously immune killers, torturers and kidnappers could finally get their just deserts. And that means fewer Pinochet-like bastards living out their lives free and with impunity.

Let’s hope Evo heeds the call!

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