The Association of Journalists of Bolivia (ANPB) and the Association of Journalists of La Paz (APLP) have expressed this Monday their rejection of Decree 4231 because it establishes a severe restriction, unconstitutional and unconventional, by penalizing the human and fundamental right to freedom of expression”.

“A supreme decree, of lower legal rank, cannot violate articles 21.5, 106 and 107 of the Constitution (…) that guarantee the exercise of the human right to freedom of expression,” these organizations have stressed.

The decree would also violate the American Convention on Human Rights, the Declaration of Principles of Freedom of Expression and the jurisprudence of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

The decree approved on May 7 states that “people who incite noncompliance with this Supreme Decree (on quarantine) or disseminate information of any kind, whether in written, printed, artistic form and / or by any other procedure they put into risk or affect public health, generating uncertainty in the population, will be subject to complaints for the commission of crimes established in the Penal Code. “

The Minister of the Presidency, Yerko Núñez, has called journalists on Monday to be “calm” because for them the Printing Law governs and not the Decree, so those who should be concerned are those who try to confuse the population and confront the country with messages on social networks.

However, from ANPB and ANLP remember that the Printing Law of 1925 clearly states that it is not an exclusive law for journalists, but that “every man has the right to publish his thoughts by the press, without prior censorship, except the restrictions established by this law. “

Press associations recall that “in the third term of former President Evo Morales we also rejected the attempt to penalize the right to freedom of expression when it was tried, without foundation, to approve a new Penal Code that would have devastated the right to freedom of expression and with our legal and self-regulatory standards. “

The presidential candidate of the Movement To Socialism (MAS) of former President Evo Morales, Luis Arce, has also denounced this “new attack on democratic freedoms in our country” and has demanded its immediate annulment.

For his part, the also presidential candidate Carlos Mesa, Áñez’s political ally, has crossed out the rule of “authoritarian, which violates fundamental constitutional rights in our society.”

Bolivia has confirmed 2,556 coronavirus positives, 273 recovered and 118 deceased, according to the latest figures from the Ministry of Health, released on Sunday.