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Paraguay, protest in the post-Stroessner era

Brian Turner and Christina Turner†


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Even though the Colorado Party continued in power in Paraguay, the overthrow of General Alfredo Stroessner opened up the political system dramatically. Many MOPOCO members became advisors to the new Rodríguez government, most prominent among them Miguel Angel González Casabianca and Waldino Lovera, although Rodriguez artfully exploited divisions within the party to maintain his power, and MOPOCO soon disappeared as a movement within the party. Rodriguez was elected president in May 1989 with almost 74 percent of the vote, to complete the term until 1993. The National Accord dissolved into its constituent parts to contest these elections, although the opposition was at an extreme disadvantage after many years of repression. Domingo Laíno finished second in these elections with 18 percent of the vote. Laíno would run second again in 1993 and 1998. Elections to a constitutional convention were held in 1991 and a new democratic constitution was promulgated in 1992. In 1993 Colorado Party politician Juan Carlos Wasmosy was elected to serve as the first civilian in the presidency since Federico Cháves was overthrown almost forty years earlier. The election was marred by fraud, but it did produce the first truly pluralistic Congress in Paraguay's history. Civil and political liberties were largely respected, although excessive use of force in confronting social protest, judicial incompetence ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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