The President of Bolivia, Evo Morales, remembered the birth and life of the legendary Bolivian Indigenous anti-colonial leader, Tupac Katari.
“Today, in 1750, was born in Ayo Ayo, Tupac Katari, who would come to fight against the abuses of colonial rule. He led a powerful Indigenous army, comprised of 40 thousand men and women. He surrounded the old Chuquiago Marka on two different occasions. Glory to our martyr,” Morales said in a Tweet.
“He opened the path to liberation from the colonial yoke,” the tweet continued.
Katari assumed his name to honor Indigenous leaders who died fighting the Spanish centuries earlier, Tupac Amaru, and Tomas Katari.
In 1781, Tupac Katari raised an army of over 40,000 Indigenous men and women, and laid siege to what is today La Paz, Bolivia, maintaining it from March to June, and again from August to October.
The siege was eventually broken by the Spanish, and Katari was arrested and martyred on November 13, his famous last words being “I will return and I will be millions.”
Katari's name continues to be a symbol of Indigenous liberation movements in Bolivia.