WOLA: Advocacy for Human Rights in the Americas

The Struggle for Human Rights in Bolivia During the Áñez Government and the COVID-19 Pandemic

12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. EDT Thursday, 13 August 2020

(AP/Juan Karita)

Join the Andean Information Network (AIN), the Center for Legal and Social Studies (CELS), the Center for Justice and Accountability (CJA), the International Human Rights Clinic at Harvard Law School, the University Network for Human Rights and the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) for an upcoming webinar.

On November 12, 2019, Jeanine Áñez became Bolivia’s interim president with the mandate of calling new elections by January 2020. Under her administration, Bolivia has endured a surge of human rights violations. Shortly after Áñez took power, state forces carried out operations to suppress demonstrations that killed at least 23 Bolivian civilians, all indigenous, and injured over 230. These casualties made November 2019 the second-deadliest month in terms of civilian deaths caused by state forces since Bolivia returned to democracy after military rule nearly 40 years ago. Since November, the interim government has continued to persecute perceived political opponents, as Áñez herself is campaigning for the presidency. With COVID-19 infections and fatalities on the rise, new elections have been postponed three times, and are now scheduled for October 18. In the context of the pandemic and the electoral campaign, the Áñez government has sought to intimidate the press, shutting down critical news outlets and arresting journalists, while also arresting or detaining hundreds of former politicians on vague charges of  “sedition” and “terrorism.” This webinar will discuss the human rights record of Bolivia’s interim government, and offer recommendations for national authorities and the international community.

Tweet your questions during the event using the hashtag #WOLABolivia 

Event Details

Thursday, August 13, 2020

12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. EDT

Welcoming remarks

John Walsh

Director for Drug Policy and the Andes, WOLA


Patricia Arce

Mayor of Vinto, Cochabamba, Bolivia

Nadia Cruz

Human Rights Ombudsperson, Bolivia

Thomas Becker

Supervisor in Human Rights Practice, University Network for Human Rights

Camila Maia

Coordinator, International Team, CELS


Kathryn Ledebur

Director, AIN

Simultaneous interpretation in English and Spanish will be available.

Instructions for webinar access will be emailed to registered participants.