Bolivia launches Truth Commission to investigate military dictatorships’ crimes

LA PAZ – Bolivian President Evo Morales is to take an oath to the five members of the Truth Commission that will research crimes committed by military dictatorships from 1964 to 1982.

According to the MP Sonia Brito, the act will take place in the Government’s Palace on Monday, August 21, when Hugo Banzer’s coup d’état commemorates 46 years.

The Commission will be composed of ex Minister of Health Nila Heredia, ex Union leader Edgar Ramirez, lawyer Eusebio Gironda, the activist for human rights Isabel Viscarra and former peasant leader Teodoro Barrientos.

The aim is to contribute to clarify grave violations of human rights and then to establish hints of civilian and criminal responsibilities of intellectual and material authors, outlined the legislator.

On December, 2016, President Morales promulgated the bill 879 for creating this organization in charge of investigating murder cases, forced disappearances, tortures, and arbitrary arrests registered in the country from November 4, 1964 to October 10, 1982.

The five members will not get paid, and in a two-year gap they must hand in a report to the President, the Multinational Legislative Assembly, the General Prosecution and the Nation’s Defender.

The Truth Commission must revise a broad quantity of documents for which it could input public and private properties and ancient security houses and former prison centers.

It will have access to classified files that are in the power of Armed Forces and the Police, Brito said.

According to estimations, just during Hugo Banzer’s dictatorship (1971-1978) were recorded 400 murders, 150 disappearances, 14,000 prisoners and 19,000 exiled.