RT Spanish broadcasts in Bolivia will be terminated starting next week, the country’ leading private TV operator has announced without a prior notice or clear explanation, citing only orders from its administration.
Cotas, a non-governmental operator and the leader in the Bolivian paid television market, sent a notice to RT on Wednesday that the Spanish service would be taken off air on December 2.
“This is a decision taken by the company’s administration, which tasked us with shutting down the channel’s broadcast,” said the statement, without going into any other details.
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It’s unclear if the move was the initiative of the company’s management or if there was any pressure from the government in La Paz that came to power after ousting President Evo Morales in a military-backed coup earlier this month.
The new government, led by conservative Senator Jeanine Anez, has been facing large-scale protests by supporters of Morales, whose party still has the parliamentary majority. More than 30 people were killed in clashes with police and the military so far. The government warned politicians from Morales’s party, Movement to Socialism, against “disloyalty” to the new authorities – while threatening journalists not to engage in what the new communications minister called “sedition.”
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“There’s no freedom of expression nor freedom of press in the country, but there’s prosecution of some leaders, murders, yet there are no culprits found,” former Vice President of Bolivia Álvaro García Linera told RT.
What constitutional freedom can be there if journalists are not allowed to do their job, to inform and tell the truth?
Earlier this month, RT Spanish broadcast was also shut off in Ecuador, after the interior minister in Quito complained about the coverage of local protests.
RT’s Ilya Petrenko has more details in his report.
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