While Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government announced its support of Bolivia’s “interim” regime led by self-declared President Jeanine Áñez after the forced ouster of Evo Morales, a number of opposition parties and civil society organizations have publicly opposed the coup.
Québec solidaire, meeting for its annual policy congress over the weekend in Longueuil, passed a motion condemning the overthrow of Morales and the violent repression that has targeted coup opponents, progressive activists and Indigenous communities. Ricochet has translated and published the preamble and motion, which has not been reported on by English-language media in Canada, passed by Québec solidaire on Nov. 17.
It must be said: what happened last week in Bolivia is a coup d'état that reminds us of the darkest hours in the history of Latin America.
In the early 1970s, the great Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano wrote: “[Latin America] continues to exist at the service of others’ needs, as a source and reserve of oil and iron, of copper and meat, of fruit and coffee, the raw materials and foods destined for rich countries which profit more from consuming them than Latin America does from producing them..the Conquistadors and the jet-setting technocrats, Hernán Cortés and the Marines.”
In 2019, sadly, this observation remains topical. The coup d'état in Bolivia was orchestrated by the country’s economic elite, with the complicity of the Organization of American States (OAS). Let’s remember that the OAS is based in Washington and that it is 44 per cent funded by the United States. It’s nothing less than the diplomatic arm of U.S. imperialism.
By calling into question the election results that gave as winner the president Evo Morales, the OAS paved the way for an illegitimate and profoundly regressive government to take power. Since the forced resignation of Evo Morales, the Whipala — the seven-coloured flag of the country’s Indigenous peoples and Bolivia’s second official flag — was taken down from the palace and burned. This is an overtly racist act.
In order to denounce this dramatic blow to democracy and human rights, the representative for Laurier-Dorion, Andrés Fontecilla, and the delegate from Verdun, Zachary Williams, presented the following urgent motion to the congress of Québec solidaire:
Bolivian President Evo Morales received the most support in Bolivia’s presidential elections; President Morales gave his consent to a second round election, even though, according to Bolivian election law, the results and support he received did not require a second round election; and, whereas the coup d'état put in power an illegitimate government in Bolivia which has promoted violence against progressive Bolivian activists and Indigenous peoples.
It is proposed:
That Québec solidaire formally denounce the coup d'état in Bolivia and the foreign interference through the OAS.
And that Québec solidaire denounce the violence of the extreme right towards President Evo Morales, the popular movements and Indigenous communities of Bolivia.