Groups opposed to President Evo Morales have called for additional protests amid an ongoing indefinite strike on Tuesday, October 29. Supporters of Morales' political rival Carlos Mesa are expected to turn out again at the seat of government in La Paz, the Casa Grande del Pueblo. A time was not clear, though protests are likely to being early and last a large part of the day. Other protests can be expected in Santa Cruz, among other urban centers.
A heightened security presence is to be expected over the coming days across La Paz and other major urban areas. Further pro- and anti-Morales demonstrations are likely, particularly in and around the capital, and clashes between the rival groups cannot be ruled out. Disruptions to transportation and business are to be anticipated in protest- and strike-affected areas.
The Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Bolivia (TSE) halted its provisionary vote count on October 20 after 83 percent of the ballot was completed. Initial results indicated that President Evo Morales was short of securing the 10-percentage point lead needed to prevent a runoff election. However, on October 21, the TSE updated the count, indicating that President Evo Morales secured 47.08 percent of the vote against his primary rival Carlos Mesa, who received 35.51 percent, preventing a runoff. Political opposition supporters are accusing the TSE of manipulating the vote in favor of Morales. The protests have already left 30 injured in the violence and constant clashes with police.
Individuals in La Paz and Santa Cruz de la Sierra are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests due to the risk of violence, prepare for disruptions to transportation and business in demonstration- and strike-affected areas, and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
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