Former Bolivian interim president Jeanine Anez said on Friday that she and former Cabinet members faced arrest over an alleged coup. In a tweet, she said, The political persecution has begun. Prosecutors accused them of terrorism and sedition related to the ouster of long-time leader Evo Morales.
Morales and his MAS socialist party returned to power following elections last October. Last year, Luis Arce, a former economy minister, won the presidential election in a landslide, enabling Morales to return to Cochabamba from exile.
The MAS has decided to return to the styles of the dictatorship. A shame because Bolivia does not need dictators, it needs freedom and solutions, Anez tweeted.
Evo Morales angered many when he ran for an unprecedented fourth term, defying constitutional term limits and been involved in voting fraud. Amid fierce protests, the military publicly called on him to step down, arguing they would not take to the streets to repress as the president demanded.
Morales eventually resigned and fled first to Mexico and then Argentina. It was not a coup, it was constitutional succession due to electoral fraud, Anez wrote in another Twitter post earlier on Friday.
During Anez's 11-month caretaker administration, several members of Morales' previous government were also detained. But her government lost in the 2020 elections, allowing Morales' Movement Toward Socialism Party to return to power under his chosen successor, Luis Arce. However Arce also made it a point that Morales should keep his distance and not actively participate in the newly elected administration.
In addition to Anez, Bolivian prosecutors are also seeking to arrest two former commanders accused by the current government of involvement in the alleged coup against Morales.
Warrants have also been issued for former police chief, Yuri Calderon and former Armed Forces commander Williams Kaliman over allegations of terrorism, sedition and conspiracy. Also under investigation is
Luis Fernando Camacho, governor-elect of Santa Cruz province, who was also a key backer of the efforts to remove Morales.