Chile rejects Bolivia’s complaint to OAS over alleged torture on detained officials

SANTIAGO – The Chilean government has deplored the announcement by Bolivia that it will report to the OAS alleged torture and harassment of its nine officials jailed here since March.

In a press statement, Foreign Minister Heraldo Muñoz described as unfounded the accusations of Bolivia’s President Evo Morales, who said he would present the case to the Organization of American States.

“They do not deserve any credibility; Chile is a rule of law,” the Foreign Minister of the southern American country stressed, adding that the lack of foundations of the stated by the Bolivian administration, ‘deserve no more response.’

Earlier this week, Evo Morales said he will submit the complaint to the OAS for the detention and imprisonment of nine Bolivian customs officers, which he described as unjust and violent.

He said there was ‘torture, intimidation, and harassment.’

The nine Bolivians arrested, two soldiers and seven civilians, according to the Bolivian version, were “engaged in combating smuggling”, which is usual on the common border.

The situation was then strained when Chile denied visas to certain Bolivian authorities to visit the prisoners.

Likewise, the Bolivian Government confirmed the expulsion and veto to journalists; and racial discrimination against the mothers of the detainees.

Bolivian customs officers are serving a prison sentence in Alto Hospicio prison, some 850 kilometers north of Santiago, accused of theft of merchandise for trade in Chilean territory.