Drama As Top Female Lawmakers Exchange Blows In Parliament (Photos)
Chaos In Bolivian Parliament As 20 Women Exchange Punches
During a session, members of parliament in Bolivia exchanged blows.
Wednesday’s incident occurred during a debate over the fate of a jailed governor whom the opposition described as a political prisoner.
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The leader of the Chamber of Deputies, Jerges Mercado, stated that the Tuesday brawl was “regrettable” and “an embarrassment.”
The legislators, who were all female, threw punches and kicks when pro-government MPs attempted to seize placards held by opposition members with messages such as “With political prisoners, there is no democracy.”
However, some of the legislators attempted to defend their actions by accusing one another of initiating the conflict. At least one stated her intent to pursue legal action.
The incident highlighted the increasing polarisation in the Andean nation, where the opposition claims there are approximately 180 political prisoners.
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During the altercation, Minister of Government Eduardo del Castillo presented a report on the December arrest of conservative Santa Cruz region governor and prominent opposition figure Luis Fernando Camacho.
Del Castillo, a minister in the government of leftist President Luis Arce, defended the legality of the arrest and referred to members of Camacho’s party as “radical, thieving, violent groups that came to steal the wallets of the Bolivian people.”
As he spoke, opposition lawmakers displayed banners and placards, some of which referred to Del Castillo as the “minister of terror.”
As others attempted to seize the signs, roughly 20 lawmakers engaged in a brawl.
Several minutes of blows were exchanged, but there were no serious injuries.
Vice President David Choquehuanca, who is also the president of Congress, announced that he would convene a meeting between the two political parties in an effort to prevent a recurrence of such events.
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