Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians - Nowhere to Run? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians - Nowhere to Run?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Towards a "Third Intifada"?

Read more

FOCUS

What solutions for California's overcrowded prisons?

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Gaza conflict: Palestinians mark sombre Eid

Read more

WEB NEWS

Celebrities in the Israel-Gaza crossfire

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Israeli strike takes out Gaza power station

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French newspaper apologises for Sarkozy story

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Last-ditch talks aim to avert Argentina default

Read more

  • Israel says it is 'days' from completing Gaza tunnel hunt

    Read more

  • Russia defiant as US, EU unveil 'phase three' sanctions

    Read more

  • Argentina fails to reach deal with holdout creditors

    Read more

  • Liberia shuts all schools as Ebola virus spreads

    Read more

  • US House votes to sue Obama for over-reaching his powers

    Read more

  • Suspect in Jewish Museum attack charged with 'terrorist' murder

    Read more

  • Women should not laugh in public, Turkey's deputy PM says

    Read more

  • Fourth female suicide bomber targets Nigerian city

    Read more

  • US rebounds to 4% growth in second quarter

    Read more

  • Video: Coping with rocket attacks in Israel’s Sderot

    Read more

  • Rats on the rampage at Louvre museum gardens

    Read more

  • France evacuates nationals, closes embassy in Libya

    Read more

  • 'Compelling' signs Kosovo leaders trafficked organs, prosecutor says

    Read more

  • Graphic: Ebola spreads across West Africa

    Read more

  • Video: How tourism is helping Rwanda’s gorillas, ex-poachers

    Read more

  • Islamists seize key Benghazi army base as fire rages on

    Read more

Americas

Morales enacts new constitution

Video by Shona BHATTACHARYYA

Latest update : 2009-02-08

President Evo Morales has announced the beginning of "communitarian socialism" and enacted a new constitution to "refound Bolivia," a policy aimed at empowering the country's indigenous majority.


  
AFP - President Evo Morales on Saturday announced the beginning of "communitarian socialism" in Bolivia as he enacted a new constitution that empowers the country's indigenous majority and allows him to seek reelection.
  
The move is key to Morales' promise to "re-found Bolivia," South America's poorest country, and overturn a centuries-old political and social order inherited from Spanish colonial times.
  
Morales, the first indigenous president since Bolivia declared independence from Spain in 1825, said in a speech that right-wing opposition groups have tried to remove him from power and even kill him ever since he took office in 2006.
  
"Now I can say: you can take me out of the (government) palace, you can kill me ... mission accomplished for a united Bolivia," he told an enthusiastic crowd of supporters in the working-class town of El Alto, a bastion of Morales support, just outside the capital La Paz.
  
The sweeping constitutional changes allow 36 indigenous communities and groups to win the right to territory, language and their own "community" justice, and enacts agrarian reform measures by limiting the size of landholdings.
  
It also scraps the single-term limit for the president, allowing Morales to stand for a second five-year term.
  
Guests included the head of the Organization of American States, Jose Miguel Insulza, and indigenous Guatemalan activist and 1992 Nobel Peace prize winner Rigoberta Menchu.
  
The constitution was approved by 61 percent of voters in a January 25 referendum. However it was rejected in the wealthy regions of Santa Cruz, Tarija, Beni and Pando, hotbeds of anti-Morales activity.
  

Date created : 2009-02-07

COMMENT(S)