Bolivia: Six-month pretrial detention for those suspected of carrying out the failed coup attempt Bolivia: Six-month pretrial detention for those suspected of carrying out the failed coup attempt

Bolivia: Six-month pretrial detention for those suspected of carrying out the failed coup attempt

Bolivia: Six-month pretrial detention for those suspected of carrying out the failed coup attempt

Yesterday, Saturday, the Bolivian authorities placed the former army commander, General Juan Jose Zuniga, and two other high-ranking officers in pretrial detention in a high-security prison, after they were accused of leading a coup attempt on Wednesday.

On Friday, the Bolivian judiciary ordered that Zuniga, former naval commander Juan Arnaiz, and former army mechanized brigade commander Alejandro Irahola be imprisoned for six months in a maximum-security prison on the outskirts of the city of El Alto, near La Paz, while the investigation into the coup attempt is completed.

The three leaders, who are suspected of wanting to overthrow President Luis Arce on Wednesday, are accused of carrying out an armed uprising and terrorism, and face up to 20 years in prison, while a total of 21 active and retired military personnel and civilians have been arrested in connection with the coup attempt.

The Minister of the Interior said yesterday, Saturday, that he had presented to the judicial authority evidence of the intention of these soldiers to carry out a coup against Arsi, after forces equipped with tanks surrounded the presidential palace for several hours before withdrawing. Arce quickly dismissed the army commander and appointed a new military command that was sworn in before him.

Surrounded by soldiers and eight tanks, Zuniga said, "The armed forces are trying to restructure democracy, to make it a real democracy. Not the democracy of some masters who have been running the country for 30 or 40 years."

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