Bolivia's Morales boards plane to Mexico as protests rage in La Paz

Bolivia's Morales boards plane to Mexico as protests rage in La Paz
  • Clock-gray 11:03
  • calendar-gray 12 November 2019

Bolivia’s ousted president Evo Morales was flying to political asylum in Mexico on Monday night, the latest step the once-beloved leader’s rapid fall, while military and police deployed in the streets of La Paz to quell violence, APA reports citing Reuters.

Morales, who was the country’s first indigenous president, boarded a Mexican government plane from the central Bolivian town of Chimore, a stronghold of his supporters where he retreated over the weekend after weeks of protests over a disputed election win loosened his grip on power.

In a tweet, he confirmed he was departing for México, but pledged to return with more “strength and energy.”

Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Twitter that Morales had boarded the plane “to ensure his safe journey to our country,” and said the aircraft had taken off.

Around La Paz’s central Murillo square and other parts of the city, opposition protesters erected roadblocks made of metal scraps and other debris.

“It’s very worrying. There was a lot of fear and panic last night. I think people are similarly if not more scared this evening,” a Western diplomat in the city said, adding that most embassies had been shut with staff working from home.

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