Ex-President Evo Morales flies into exile in Mexico – Anes wants new elections


Bolivia's ex-leader speaks in his resignation of "coup" and asks Mexico for asylum. His opponents celebrate the "end of tyranny". Meanwhile, opposition leader Jeanine Anes has announced new elections.

After his resignation, the Bolivian ex-president Evo Morales has made his own statement on the way to exile in Mexico. "Sisters and brothers, I'm leaving for Mexico," he wrote on Twitter on Monday. "It hurts me to leave the country for political reasons, but I will always take care of it, soon I will come back with more strength and energy."

The Mexican government confirmed that Morales was aboard a special machine. "Evo Morales is on the plane of the Mexican government that has been sent to ensure its safe transportation to our country," Mexico's Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard wrote on Twitter. Previously, Mexico had declared that Morales should be granted asylum on humanitarian grounds. The life of the ex-president is in danger in Bolivia, said Ebrard.

Previously, Bolivia's designated transitional president has announced new elections following his resignation. Jeanine Anez promised journalists in Bolivia's capital, La Paz, on Monday to call a vote so that "we have an elected president on January 22". The 52-year-old Senator also called for an end to the week-long violent protests.

Jeanine Anez, second vice-president of the Senate: Anez has agreed to temporarily take over the presidency of Bolivia and call new elections. (Source: dpa / Natacha Pisarenko)Jeanine Anez, second vice-president of the Senate: Anez has agreed to temporarily take over the presidency of Bolivia and call new elections. (Source: Natacha Pisarenko / dpa)

Morales had resigned on Sunday only three weeks after his controversial re-election. The Socialist had declared himself the winner in the first round after the vote on 20 October, although the opposition and international observers had serious doubts. His opponents accused him of electoral fraud. Since then, street protests have led to fierce clashes between supporters and opponents of Morales almost daily. At least three people were killed.

Morales is accused of election manipulation

The Organization of American States (OAS) had noted in a preliminary report manipulations in the presidential election and recommended a cancellation. As a result, Morales initially announced a new election on Sunday, but in the end he gave in to the growing pressure from the military and police. Morales, the first indigenous president of Bolivia, and his allies in the region spoke of a coup. Morales' strongest candidate in the election, conservative ex-president Carlos Mesa, wrote on Twitter that the resignation meant an "end to tyranny".

The South American country is now without government. In addition to the head of state, her resignations also included the vice-president, the president of the senate, and the president of the chamber of deputies, who would actually have to take office after the constitution. Only Senate Second Vice President Jeanine Anez agreed on television to temporarily take over the presidency and call new elections.

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