Protesters died in the middle of a confrontation between opponents and officials
Protests for the political crisis in Bolivia
Two people died on Wednesday night in Bolivia in the midst of a serious confrontation between opposition protesters and officials in the city of Montero, located 60 kilometers from Santa Cruz de la Sierra. They are the first fatalities of the clashes that occur daily in the country for a week, between groups trying to keep the cities paralyzed and mobilized, to protest the outcome of the October 20 elections, and groups that, flying the official flags, break and prevent blockages.
These fights have caused dozens of injuries due to stones and blows, some of them serious. Instead, Mario Salvatierra, 60, and Marcelo Terrazas, 48, died as a result of gunshot wounds. This implies an escalation of the political violence that convulses Bolivia since the result of the elections was unknown by the main rival of President Evo Morales, Carlos Mesa, who argues that there was a huge fraud and that the possibility of unpacking with it was taken away. Morales in a second round.
A few hours before the news of these deaths were known, the Minister of Communication, Manuel Canelas, had called on the opposition to find a political solution to the crisis, before something happens that we will all regret. Mesa decided to reject the government invitation to participate in the audit of the elections that will begin on Thursday a team of specialists from the Organization of American States (OAS), under an agreement between this body and the Bolivian Government.
One of the two people killed, apparently with shotgun shots, belonged to the civic movement. Opposition leaders publish condolences and strong complaints against the ruling party. The militancy of the other deceased person is not confirmed. The question of who the victims were and who the perpetrators of the shooting now acquires great importance in the polarized Bolivian situation.
The Government is pending the audit of the OAS. If the verification finds sufficient irregularities, a tie-break vote could occur between Morales and Mesa. The opposition considers that it is a hoax and ensures that it does not want a second round, but a new general election. Even some leaders demand the immediate resignation of the Government.
But the position of the Citizen Community, the Mesa coalition, on the audit has been uncertain, the former president himself implicitly accepted it, but his number two, Gustavo Pedraza, denied that it was approved as a way out of the current crisis.