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Startseite Urgent Actions 2019 10 Researchers who denounced electoral fraud at risk
UA 141/19
Bolivia
Abgeschlossen am 9. Dezember 2019
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29.10.2019: Correction

Due to issues being experienced by those taking action, we have updated the email address for the target on this UA.

Please send appeals to: info@mingobierno.gob.bo and comunicacion@comunicacion.gob.bo

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Researchers who denounced electoral fraud at risk

AI-Index: AMR 18/1305/2019

On 24 October Edgar Villegas, systems engineer and analyst, denounced irregularities in Bolivia’s general elections of 20 October on public TV. His study done with other academics pointed to large discrepancies between the preliminary count and the final electoral results that gave victory to incumbent president Evo Morales. Following the TV interview Villegas, his family, and Mónica Ximena Galarza, the journalist who interviewed him, were intimidated. These incidents happened in a wider context of repression by the authorities in response to social protests following the election results.

Additional information

Edgar Villegas´s study, published on television on 24 October, used public information to demonstrate large discrepancies between the preliminary count and final count of electoral results of the 20 October presidential election in Bolivia, which determined electoral victory for the incumbent president Evo Morales.

Following the presidential elections, thousands of people have protested in response to what they consider an electoral fraud. The authorities of Bolivia in many cases have reacted in a repressive manner to these protests, and Amnesty International has expressed concern in this regard. See: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/10/bolivia-autoridades-deben-respetar-derecho-protesta-pacifica/

Edgar Villegas is a recognized system engineer and analyst that graduated from a Bachelor of Systems Engineering in the Catholic Bolivarian University «San Pablo» in 2007. Since then he has participated in a series of national and international teams in relation to public information and transparency. Besides his recent work, he also carried out similar work in 2016 where he used public information to denounce electoral fraud. In response he received intimidations and hostile messages. However, he told Amnesty International that this current response to his work has a higher intensity than the response to his work in 2016.

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