Conflicts & War

Ex-Bolivian president suffers from eating disorder, harassment in prison

La Paz, Oct 1 (EFE).- Jailed former Bolivian president Jeanine Áñez Friday alleged that she was suffering from harassment and an eating disorder in her prison.

Áñez, 54, is serving preventive detention for allegedly participating in a coup to depose former President Evo Morales in 2019.

She appeared in a virtual hearing on Friday to challenge her detention.

The former interim president said her memory was failing her as she was “a victim of violence and psychological torture” in the Miraflores prison, where she has been for more than six months.

“My nutritionist diagnosed me with anorexia nervosa that undoubtedly aggravates my malnutrition,” Áñez said.

She alleged that prison authorities were giving her drugs “with questionable efficacy” that have caused her to oversleep and hallucinate.

She said a group of women yelled at her and insulted her.

“These rights violations are committed under the insensitive gaze of the prison authorities.”

She said that the prison authorities had restricted her from meeting her lawyers, and she could not talk to her psychiatrist directly.

“I assume that the only thing that the government is looking for and is going to achieve is my death,” the ex-president said.

Añez visibly suffered a decompensation during the hearing.

The court later decided to resume the session on Saturday, one of her lawyers, Norka Cuéllar, told the media.

The prison authorities, in a statement, indicated that Áñez suffered a “slight decompensation” and was taken care of medically.

“Áñez is stable and is receiving constant medical attention from the health personnel of the prison.”

Her daughter, Carolina Ribera, alleged that a government lawyer had labeled her mother as a “theater worker.”

“I demand respect for her. She has never been theatrical. If she experiences these decompensations, it is because she really has a very serious state of crisis,” said Ribera.

Meanwhile, the prosecution said it had summoned Santa Cruz Governor Luis Fernando Camacho to testify on Oct.7 in the coup case.

Camacho is one of the main defendants in the case.

Áñez is facing charges related to terrorism, sedition, and conspiracy over an alleged coup after she replaced Morales in November 2019 when he fled the country during widespread protests against his re-election. EFE


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