Bolivia’s President Evo Morales has resigned, shortly after the country’s military urged him to do so. Two officials next in line to take over the government also left as the country is in turmoil after weeks of protests.
“I resign from my position as president so that (Carlos) Mesa and (Luis Fernando) Camacho do not continue to persecute socialist leaders,” Morales said during a televised address naming the leaders of the opposition.
Morales said that he decided to leave the post in hopes that his departure would stop the spate of violent attacks against officials and indigenous people, “so that they [protesters] do not continue burning the houses [of public officials]” and “kidnapping and mistreating” families of indigenous leaders.
“It is my obligation , as the first indigenous president and president of all Bolivians, to seek this pacification,” he said, adding that he hopes opposition would “understand the message.”
Shortly after the announcement his Vice-President Alvaro Marcelo García Linera also submitted his resignation. The next person in line to take over the government, the president of the Senate Adriana Salvatierra, resigned soon after.
Earlier on Sunday Morales announced snap elections, giving in to the mounting pressure over the disputed results of the October 20 polls. The decision followed the release of a preliminary report from the Organization of American States (OAS) mission on the elections, that was unable to validate them, saying it is “statistically unlikely” that Morales secured a 10-percent lead, required to avoid a runoff vote. Moreover, the auditors claimed they had found signs of “clear manipulation” and irregularities during the polls. Also on rt.com Bolivia’s military chief calls on President Morales to resign after new elections announced
La Paz, in Bolivia, is the highest administrative capital in the world, resting on the Andes’ Altiplano plateau at more than 3,500m above sea level. It stretches to El Alto city in the highlands, with snow-capped, 6,438m-high Mt. Illimani as its backdrop.