An Angry Group Of Anti-Morales Protesters Attacked This Bolivian Mayor Ripping Off Her Clothes And Cutting Her Scalp
The general elections that took place in Bolivia on Oct. 20, 2019, will go down as a historic moment for the South American country that caused a significant shift for the government — and the movement isn’t over. For outsiders, it may seem as if the ramifications of the elections only affected Evo Morales, the ousted president who declared himself the leader once again for a fourth consecutive term. While Bolivian authorities have issued a warrant for his arrest, the former president, who is currently in Argentina, unrest continues to be felt, especially in Vinto, Bolivia. Warning, these images are graphic.
On Nov. 7, As a result of the fraudulent elections in Bolivia, anti-government protesters kidnapped Patricia Arce, the mayor of Vinto, Bolivia, and committed horrific crimes against her.
As supporters of Evo Morales and those against his political party took to the streets in protest of the elections, some took their anger even further by attacking Arce. We should note that Arce is a member of Morales’s political party. And, as a result of her political affiliation, anti-government protesters took her by force from her office.
She recounted the moment protesters accosted her at work. She knew the area was under attack and wanted to get away, but that is when protesters took her and doused her with red paint. They also cut off her hair and tried to rip off her clothes.
“When they arrived in Quillacollo, Arce was unrecognizable, her hair shorn, and reeking of gasoline and urine,” BuzzFeed reports. “Her assailants forced her to the ground; they ordered her to resign and speak critically of Morales as she looked into the collection of cellphones they had shoved in her face.”
Video footage shows Arce’s captors holding her down, and they made her sign a resignation letter.
“I’m not going to shut up,” Arce said in a video, the New York Times reports. “And if they want to kill me, may they kill me. For this process of change, I will give my life.”
Police eventually came to her rescue, but even as she recovered at a hospital, she was informed that she couldn’t remain there because her safety was at risk. She had to leave.
Morales’ challenger Carlos Mesa has instructed his supporters to remain active on the streets. As of now, officials have said that Bolivians will get a new election, and Morales vows to return to Bolivia by next year.
Yet still, through all of this chaos, Arce has returned to work despite some reports that she faked the entire assault.
In late November, Arce — wearing a blonde wig — gave a press conference. She commented on the accusation that she orchestrated her kidnapping and attack on the streets. She said she would have never done that and does not wish that upon anyone.
“I do not want any person, any woman to happen what happened to me, I think you have to set a precedent,” Arce said, according to Los Tiempos. “It’s shameful to think that someone would do this to herself,” she added. “I may have been orphaned at two, but I was raised with values and principles.”
Arce said she would continue her term, but it remains to be seen if she herself with be prosecuted because of a recent complaint filed against her. BuzzFeed reports that Arce is being accused of “separatism” and “improper use of public goods and services.” But for now, she remains in office even though she’s still recovering from her injuries.
“To have quit or to have kneeled down would have been a betrayal of all women,” she told the media news site.
While it remains to be seen what will come of Bolivia’s government, Morales still has strong allies in Bolivia along with Mexico President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and Argentina President Alberto Fernández.
Lopez Obrador said that Bolivia officials need to back off and stop harassing Morales with threats and arrest warrants.
“The right of asylum must be guaranteed,” Lopez Obrador said, according to the New York Times. But Morales has already vowed to return to Bolivia and lead the country once again.