Leader of the riot, General Juan José Zuñiga, claims without evidence that the president of Bolivia ordered a “self-coup”

Bolivian President Luis Arce (Movimiento al Socialismo, left), denied this Thursday (June 27, 2024) having orchestrated an attempted coup in the country together with General Juan José Zuñiga. The statement came after the former head of the Army claimed, without presenting evidence, that the action on Wednesday (June 26) was arranged with Arce.

“How could this be an instruction or a plan for a self-coup? He acted on his own.”the Bolivian president told reporters.

Zuñiga, who was arrested after leading the coup attempt, told reporters that he met with the president on Sunday (June 23) and that he needed to boost his popularity.

“So I asked, ‘Do we take out the armor?’ and he said, ‘Take it off.’ On the same day, the armored vehicles began to be prepared.”said the general before being removed by police officers.

This Thursday (June 27), the Minister of the Interior of Bolivia, Eduardo del Castillo, told the broadcaster Unitel that the government was warned of signs of “attempts at destabilization” before the riot. However, he said the details were unknown.

Del Castillo said 17 people were arrested for their role in the coup attempt, including Zúñiga and former Navy commander Juan Arnez Salvador. An estimated 200 military personnel were involved.

Zúñiga, the main figure behind the coup attempt, had been fired from his position on Tuesday (June 26), after criticizing former president Evo Morales. During an interview, he said that Morales could no longer hold the position, declaring that he would not allow “the Constitution was trampled upon, that it disobeyed the people’s mandate”.

Despite the threat culminating in the dismissal of the former commander, the government did not expect the general to mobilize the army against Arce.

“No one could have imagined that the next day, before the official transfer of office, there would be a failed coup in our country”del Castillo said.


At 3:57 pm (Brasília time) on Wednesday (June 26), the president of Bolivia, Luis Arce, announced the coup attempt after armored vehicles and military personnel parked on the corners of Plaza Murillo, where the Quemado Palace, the seat of the Bolivian Presidency, and the Plurinational Legislative Assembly are located, in the city of La Paz.

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The movement was led by General Juan José Zúñigaformer commander of the Bolivian Army who was dismissed on Tuesday (June 25) after criticizing former Bolivian President Evo Morales. Speaking to reporters, Zúñiga these that the military were looking for “restore democracy” and called for the immediate release of political prisoners.

Images released on social media showed the moment a tank hit the entrance to the presidential palace in La Paz.

In another record, the Bolivian president appeared facing General Zúñiga outside the palace.

Arce changed the army command because of the coup attempt. Standing next to the president in the Quemado Palace, the new commander, José Wilson Sánchez, ordered the troops to retreat. “I ask, I order that all personnel who are mobilized must return to their units”he declared.

Around 7pm (Brasília time) this Wednesday (June 26), the soldiers began to leave Murillo Square.

Source: https://www.poder360.com.br/internacional/arce-nega-envolvimento-em-tentativa-de-golpe-na-bolivia/

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