The House of Representatives voted on Wednesday night to approve a measure directing the State Department to investigate the Washington-based Organization of American States (OAS) and its role facilitating the coup against Bolivia’s three-term President Evo Morales in 2019. The provision, which was tucked into the $67 billion State Department and foreign operations spending package, instructs the State Department to gather information regarding the OAS’s unfounded claims of election fraud. The OAS’s accusations, and the US media’s rushing in to parrot these falsehoods, led to the expulsion of Bolivia’s popular left-wing president, and put the country in the hands of an unelected military junta. Jeanine Áñez, who declared herself the “interim” president after Morales was ousted, oversaw the massacres of Indigenous protesters and other human rights violations during her year in power.
“Since the day after the 2019 Bolivian elections, the OAS has helped direct a false narrative that the incumbent president, Evo Morales, and his party ‘rigged’ the election,” Illinois Democratic Representative Jan Schakowsky told The Nation in a statement. “This narrative contributed to political polarization, a military coup, and violent political repression in Bolivia as well as uncertainty for the democracy’s future.”
“The language included in the SFOPs Appropriations bill would help us finally see accountability and transparency from OAS, and ensure that it carries out its mission independently and impartially,” Schakowsky continued. “I look forward to continuing our work to make sure this language makes it into law.”
The language tells the State Department to collect testimony from “independent, internationally recognized experts” regarding the legitimacy of the 2019 Bolivia general elections, the OAS’s role, and the investigations int