During the last few hours, several acting authorities in the Plurinational State of Bolivia have presented the idea that Cuban collaborators are encouraging protests taking place in Bolivia, along with a similar campaign on social media, through accounts of doubtful origin and false profiles, inciting violence against health personnel. In this context, on November 13, four members of the Medical Brigade in El Alto were arrested by the police as they were traveling to their residence with money withdrawn from a bank to pay for basic services and rent for the 107 members of the Brigade Medical in the region. The arrests were based on the slanderous presumption that the money was to be used to finance protests. Police representatives and the Public Ministry visited the headquarters of the Medical Brigade in El Alto and La Paz and confirmed, based on documents, payrolls, and bank details that the amount of money coincided with that regularly withdrawn every month.
The four collaborators arrested are:Amparo Lourdes García Buchaca, Electromedicine specialist. In Cuba she worked at the Provincial Electromedicine Center in the province of Cienfuegos, before joining the mission in Bolivia, in March this year. Idalberto Delgado Baró, economist from the Isle of Youth Special Municipality, who worked at the Municipal Electromedicine Center there before joining the mission in Bolivia last March. Ramón Emilio Álvarez Cepero, Intensive Therapy and Endocrinology specialist, who in Cuba worked at General Gustavo Aldereguía Hospital in the province of Cienfuegos through July of 2017, when he joined the Bolivian mission. Alexander Torres Enriquez, specialist in Comprehensive General Medicine who worked at the Carlos Verdugo Polyclinic in the province of Matanzas, before joining the mission in Bolivia, February 3, 2019.
Uninterrupted contact with these Cuban collaborators has been maintained, through the Cuban Embassy in La Paz and the Medical Brigade’s headquarters. The four Cuban collaborators all have commendable careers, as evident in their occupational profiles, and, as is the case with all those completing missions in Bolivia, they have strictly, rigorously focused on the humanitarian and cooperative work that brought them to the country, in accordance with intergovernmental agreements.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs rejects false accusations that these collaborators encourage or fund protests, based on deliberate lies with no basis whatsoever.
Given the circumstances described, the immediate return to the homeland of all Cuban collaborators has been decided.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs demands that detained cooperators be released immediately, and that Bolivian authorities guarantee the physical integrity of all Cuban collaborators, in accordance with the responsibility assumed by the Bolivian State for the security and protection of these collaborators, in signed intergovernmental agreements.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs calls on Bolivian authorities to put an end to the aggravation of irresponsible, hateful, anti-Cuban behavior, defamation, and instigation of violence against Cuban collaborators, who have made a contribution to the health of the sister Bolivian people with their solidarity. The millions of Bolivians who have received altruistic attention from hundreds of Cuban doctors know perfectly well that lies cannot hide the meritorious contribution and noble motivations of our health professionals. (Minrex)