AMERICA/BOLIVIA - "The exploitation of justice destroys the democratic basis of our life together," says the Bishops' document "Charity and Truth"

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

La Paz (Agenzia Fides) - The Bolivian Episcopal Conference published yesterday, September 17, the statement "Caridad y Verdad", as the conclusion of the meeting of the Permanent Episcopal Council of Bolivian Bishops. This document, of which a copy was sent to Fides Agency, addresses three important issues for Bolivian society: Tipnis, the 2012 Census, Human Rights and Justice.
On the first topic, the Church expresses great concern, because there was a division among the people about the formal consultation by the government, after many of them received "gifts" to respond to the consultation in a positive way. This situation urges us "to call on the government to return to the path of true dialogue, unity and without division, with the care of the environment for future generations" is what is written in the text.
For the 2012 Census, the Church invites everyone to participate in a proper manner to the success of this national event. Considering that the Census should reflect the reality of society, "it should be a tool that takes into account all aspects of people’s life and society, including the socio-cultural and religious identity. Therefore the spiritual and religious dimension, a fundamental part of the Bolivian reality, cannot be neglected, not even in a secular State," the statement said.
With regards to Human Rights and Justice, the Episcopal Council reiterates what the Episcopal Conference condemned in March 2011: "In our country many people lose their freedom and there is a delay in justice ... this creates a climate of insecurity ". This situation has further deteriorated. An example is the complaint made by the Government to 3 means of communication. "We confirm our rejection to this measure adopted by the government and ask that one acts in accordance with the current Law of the Press," write the Bishops.
The statement continues: "Many people imprisoned, exiled, political refugees, suffer because there is no guarantee of a fair trial and for the delay of justice. It is urgent that the exercise of justice is free from economic, social and political constraints, not for impunity but to ensure a fair trial and to establish the truth of the facts. We would also like to suggest, in order to create a climate of peace in the country, to make a gesture of reconciliation, such as clemency or amnesty for these brothers. Continuing with the manipulation of justice completely destroys the foundation of our democratic society, which cost labor to many people and institutions, it also casts a negative image to the world about the validity of the rights and fundamental freedoms in our country ". The document is signed by Mgr. Oscar Aparicio, Secretary General of the Episcopal Conference. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 18/09/2012)