Nationwide demonstrations entered their third consecutive week on Monday, November 4, as opposition groups continue to demand the resignation of President Evo Morales amid allegations of electoral fraud. On Saturday, November 2, opposition leader Luis Fernando Camacho gave Morales 48 hours to step down, with the deadline set to expire at 19:00 (local time) on Monday. It remains unclear what action Camaro intends to take should Morales refuse to comply. Morales accused Camaro of sowing unrest, while Interior Minister Carlos Romero alleged that a potential "coup strategy" was underway.
Further demonstrations are expected in La Paz and other major urban centers in the coming days. A heightened security presence and associated disruptions are anticipated around all protest sites. Violence between demonstrators and security forces or rival political supporters is also possible.
Tensions have been high in the country since 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 Bolivia more generally, 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.
Copyright and Disclaimer