Bolivian Cocaleros Call for Pause in Blockades 12/14/01

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Amidst cries for the vengeance of the deaths of seven former coca growers at the hands of Bolivian security forces in recent weeks, the federations of coca growers met in Cochabamba on Tuesday and called for a temporary pause in road blockades until after the Christmas holiday, Narco News reported from the scene.

But the recent killings by the security forces, particularly the assassination last week of Six Federations leader Casimiro Huanca in the Chapare (http://www.drcnet.org/wol/214.html#cocacrisis), have left the cocaleros in no mood to talk. Instead, they are demanding the government killers be brought to justice and the coca eradication program stopped. Plan Dignity, as the eradication program is known, was imposed by former dictator-turned-President Banzer under severe US pressure and has been enthusiastically continued by his successor, Pres. Jaime Quiroga.

"You have heard the references to a 7-0 score here," Congressman Evo Morales said, announcing the halt. "Many want vengeance. However, we are announcing the suspension of our blockades of the highways until December 29th, for the Christmas season. The government tells us it wants to dialogue again. But there can be no dialogue while the assassins walk free. There can be no dialogue while the eradication of coca continues. We've been very patient people. We want justice not only in the case of compañero Huanca, but in the assassinations of all seven farmers killed in these months."

Visit http://narconews.com/warlog.html for on-the-scene reports by Narco News, updated daily. Visit http://www.stopthedrugwar.org/boliviawar/ to protest the US-driven policies that fostered this crisis.

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Issue #215, 12/14/01 Do You Read the Week Online? | Top British Cops Call for Legal Heroin for Addicts, Liberal Democrats Join Growing Ecstasy Rescheduling Chorus | Marijuana Arrests Fuel Increase in Teen Drug Treatment Numbers | DEA Dog and Pony Show on Narcoterror Rallies Drug Warriors, Initiates New Propaganda Campaign | Narco News Lawsuit Thrown Out: Precedent Extends Press Protections to the Internet | Bolivian Cocaleros Call for Pause in Blockades | Catholic Progressives Differ with Pope on Drug Prohibition | Utah Town Makes Marijuana Possession Ten Dollar Fine, Draws Heat, Will Retreat | DEA Okays First Medical Marijuana Trials in Nearly Two Decades | Book Review: "Narcocorridos: A Journey Into the Music of Drugs, Guns, and Guerrillas" | Media/Web Scan: Mother Jones, BigTenU.org, Essence, Reason, ColorLines, FPIF Report, FEAR Manual, Hutchinson-Johnson Debate | Bay Area: Job Opportunity at Harm Reduction Coalition | Alerts: Bolivia, HEA Drug Provision, Sembler Nomination, DEA Hemp Ban, Ecstasy Bill, Mandatory Minimums, Medical Marijuana | The Reformer's Calendar
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