Protests in Bolivia: they announce new mobilizations throughout the country to ask for the census to be carried out in 2023

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The demonstrations against the government of Luis Arce in Santa Cruz completed 16 days on Sunday. For this Monday, the civic committees announced strikes, hunger strikes and roadblocks in almost all regions of the country

< img class="aligncenter" src="/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/protests-in-bolivia-announce-new-mobilizations-throughout-the-country-to-request-the-carrying-out-of- census-en-2023-aeee444.jpg" alt="Protests in Bolivia: new mobilizations are announced throughout the country to ask for the census to be carried out in 2023" />

A demonstrator throws a firecracker as people protest against the postponement of the 2023 population and housing census in Cochabamba, Bolivia, on Oct. 27, 2022. (REUTERS/Patricia Pinto/File photo)

The protests in the Bolivian region ofSanta Cruz, the largest in the country, so that the censusof population is in 2023 threaten to spread to the entire country starting this Monday, while a technical commission works to set the final date of registration.

The so-called “movement civic” of Bolivia began an indefinite national strike on October 22 to demand the holding of the Census in 2023, instead of 2024 as the Bolivian Government has proposed, since this registration conditions the distribution of aid between the regions of the country.

The protests were concentrated in the city ofSanta Cruz, where the opposition to President Luis Arce It has more weight and is the economic engine of the country, there a person has lost his life during the mobilizations.

But representatives of the movement announced a strike throughout the territory national this Monday if the Government does not set a date for the census, since they consider that it is a lack of political will and not technical difficulties as defended by Arce.

Protests in Bolivia: new mobilizations are announced throughout the country to ask for the census to be carried out in 2023

Bolivian President Luis Arce ( REUTERS/Patricia Pinto)

Sunday in Santa Cruz marked 16 days of strike. In the regional capital, the street blockades were maintainedand the activities were almost nil. Demonstrations throughout the region were announced for this Monday.

Among the sectors that will join the national protests with stoppages, hunger strikes< /b> and roadblocks are the National Council in Defense of Democracy (Conade), the civic committees b>, the country's citizen platforms, heavy transportation, the coca growers of Los Yungas and the Bolivia Medical College, according to the newspaper El Deber.< /i>

Several hunger strike pickets will set up this Monday in the city of La Paz and in regions such as Cochabamba due to the lack of attention from of the Government, indicated those responsible for Conade.

In some regions, such as Tarija, Oruro and Beni, civic movements announced hunger strikes, 24-hour stoppages and even indefinite strikes, while sectors such as theSanitary workers plan to stop on Tuesday.

The coca growers of Los Yungas warned of starting roadblocks this Monday for the census and to demand the release of his colleagues detained in a conflict with a group of producers close to the government.

Protests in Bolivia: new mobilizations are announced throughout the country to ask for the census to be carried out in 2023

Bolivian riot police remove some tires that were used to block streets today in Santa Cruz (Bolivia) (EFE/Juan Carlos Torrejón)

In La Paz, on the other hand, taking pressure measures against the government was ruled out.

The National University System also calls for a great marchStarting at 4:00 p.m. this Monday. The vice-chancellor of the Gabriel René Moreno Autonomous University, Reineirio Vargas, announced that the march will be at the departmental level with the 12 faculties and invited the population to join this action.

The governor of Santa Cruz, Luis Fernando Camacho, blamed the Government for the escalation of the mobilizations.

“The Government has shown that it has no will, we have been clear from the beginning, we are not going to lift the measures until we have the census in 2023. The mandate of the council has been an indefinite strike and now the country is entering a strike national scale. What happens from now on is the sole and exclusive responsibility of the national government,” said Camacho, one of the leaders of the mobilizations that led to the resignation of former president Evo Moralesin 2019.

The representative pointed out that citizens “have been patient” and that it is not a whim of a few, but a right of all Bolivians, so the census must be done “as soon as possible.” In addition, he defended that the intention of the protesters is not to destabilize the Government, as the president has argued in recent weeks.

For his part, the president of the Pro-Santa Cruz Committee, Romulo Calvo, said that it is expected that Arce “wants to put an end” to the conflict and prevent the strike from continuing and that “other populations join in taking de facto measures.”

Protests in Bolivia: new mobilizations are announced throughout the country to ask for the census to be carried out in 2023

View of a poster on top of a sand fence that blocks a street today in Santa Cruz (Bolivia) (EFE/Juan Carlos Torrejón)

For weeks, the Executive insisted on the need to meet technical criteria to determine the date for carrying out the population and housing census, however the protesters accuse it of wanting to delay it.

In an interview with the state media, the presidential spokesman, Jorge Richter, insisted that the conflict seeks a “constitutional rupture” as, according to the ruling party, happened in 2019 when Evo Morales resigned from the Presidency claiming to be the victim of a coup d'état, amid allegations of electoral fraud in his favor in the failed elections that year.

However, he himself Evo Morales indicated on Twitter that he does not believe that behind the protests over the census there is an intention to carry out a “coup d'état”, but rather a “plan” to weaken the ruling party and damage the economy.

(With information from Europa Press and EFE)

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