Commission that investigates femicides began without families of the victims

Commission that investigates femicides began without families of the victims

Luis Escobar / La Paz

The Executive, Legislative and Judicial bodies formed a commission to review the cases of femicides and rapists who were released. This group of authorities met yesterday without the presence of the organizations of families of victims of these crimes, who waited for more than seven hours at the gates of the Casa del Pueblo.

“We stayed until 1:00 p.m. and we could never enter. Senator Virginia Velasco told us (at 9:00) that they would allow us to pass, but we stayed for hours. We have our families. Other mothers live in the provinces and cannot stay. We are withdrawing,” said Estela Quintana, representative of the Association of Families of Victims in Search of Justice.

Nivia Coca, representative of the Women of Fire organization, arrived from Cochabamba. He said that after a long wait, they finally managed to enter the Palace to meet with the director of the Depatriarchalization Service.

“We entered after the rain, around 4:30 p.m. (after seven and a half hours of waiting). He promised that they would go through all the departments and speed up the most pressing cases,” Coca explained to Página Siete.

Hours before, mothers and relatives of the victims of femicides tried to enter the committee meeting, but dozens of police officers prevented their passage. Many brought their documents ready to present their cases and denounce the justice operators who freed femicides and rapists.

While the representatives of Mujeres de Fuego entered the House of the People, the Minister of the Presidency, María Nela Prada, said that they “share” the pain and “indignation” of the release of femicide and serial rapist Richard Choque.

“It is the first time that a space has been created that will be dedicated to the review of the processes with a conviction for the crimes of rape and femicide in which the defendants would have been released,” the Minister of the Presidency said yesterday.

This commission will also have the capacity to denounce irregularities and punish people involved in illicit acts that would have allowed people sentenced for rape and femicide to be released. “The necessary actions will be taken immediately, such as comprehensive intervention,” he specified.

“The objective of the commission is to give quick, concrete results to the population that feels indignation, pain and impotence. (…) It is a situation that challenges all State bodies and Bolivian society regarding violence against us, women”, assured Prada.

Quintana, the representative of the families of the victims, said that they left through correspondence from the Ministry of the Presidency their bill of life imprisonment and bonus for orphans of femicide. “We were at the door of the Casa del Pueblo with femicide cases that had been sentenced and were released. In any case, we hope that this new commission can give us results”, he added.

The commission will be made up of 17 instances of the Executive, Legislative and Judicial bodies. Prada will be the president and the Minister of Justice, Iván Lima, will be the technical secretary.

On behalf of the Executive there will also be the Vice Minister of Equal Opportunities, the director of the Plurinational Service for Women of Depatriarchalization and the Minister of Government, Eduardo del Castillo.

On behalf of the Legislature will be the presidents of the Senate, Andrónico Rodríguez, and of the Chamber of Deputies, Freddy Mamani, and the presidents of the Justice commissions of both chambers. From the Judicial Branch, the presidents of the Supreme Court of Justice and the Plurinational Constitutional Court and the Council of the Magistrature were invited. The president of the Gender Committee of the Supreme Court of Justice, the state attorney general and the state attorney general. The Commander General of the Police and the interim Ombudsman, Nadia Cruz, are added.

Authorities, yesterday at the first meeting of the commission, at the Casa del Pueblo.
Photo: Carlos Sánchez / Page Seven

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