Home Trending Video Stories Bolivia President Luis Arce Denies Prior Intelligence Of Failed Coup

Bolivia President Luis Arce Denies Prior Intelligence Of Failed Coup

Did Bolivia‘s President Luis Arce have prior knowledge of the foiled coup?

A day after dramatic scenes at the Murillo Plaza in La Paz saw an armoured vehicle ram into the Presidential palace gate and the confrontation between President and his Army General, there are questions now being raised about whether it was a coup or a self-coup?

Before General Zuniga was arrested, he himself had claimed that President Arce had asked him to do something to boost his popularity, without giving evidence of it.

Now a similar allegation has surfaced from a minister.

Gerardo Garcia, Vice President of the MAS party said in a press conference,
“If this was not an auto coup d’etat, when Zuniga (Former commanding general of the Bolivian Army) made the statements, which he made on Monday (he said ex-President Evo Morales, should not be able to run again for president and threatened to block him if he attempted to do so), the President should’ve replaced him as head of the Armed Forces, but that didn’t happen.

So, they (coup plotters) have wanted to firm up on this alleged coup d’etat. For us, it was a planned coup d’etat led by the government, simply look at who it was directed to. We had denounced it, as Zuniga declared that he wanted to jail or kill Evo (Morales).”

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Latin America is not new to the concept of autogolpe, which refers to a sitting President trying to seize extraordinary power when he can’t manage to do it in the normal circumstances.

Bolivia is not new to coups either but this attempt came after a gap of 40 years.

It also comes on the back of a power struggle between Luis Arce and his one-time ally-turned-adversary Evo Morales.

Morales is looking to challenge Arce in next year’s Presidential elections and this has divided the left-leaning party.

For his part, the President has denied that he had any prior information regarding the coup. “On the alleged information General (Juan Jose) Zuniga gave us, not at all. We were never informed of what he intended even less the mobilisations he conducted but we were surprised by these facts,” said President Arce.

Bolivia is also facing an economic turmoil and the government hasn’t had much progress on getting a handle on it. The foiled coup attempt may give the current President a shot in the arm in terms of support at a time when his popularity was falling, but he will need to take more concrete steps to tackle the economic crisis Bolivia is facing.