Bolivia’s former president Evo Morales went to Mexico on Tuesday, November 12th, after resigning following weeks of political unrest and violence in the Latin American country. Morales has been granted asylum by Mexico’s leftist government, reported Reuters.
The newly resigned president flew in a Mexican Air Force airplane from the town of Chimore, a stronghold of the indigenous president, to end a 13-year tenure that has witnessed steady economic growth.
Morales’ fall came after his attempt to have a fourth presidential term which prompted accusations of autocracy against him by his political rivals, leaving the country with political unrest and a desperate need for an interim president.
Despite his resignation, Morales denounced the political movement against him as a coup, an accusation deemed false by his political rivals as he had already resigned.
Morales’ plane stopped in Paraguay to refuel, another country that had offered asylum for the former Bolivian president, however, the country’s political administration does not consider the opposition against Morales as a coup, according to AFP.
"If he resigned, it is not a coup. He resigned," said Paraguayan President Mario Abdo.
"His life and integrity are safe," tweeted Mexico's Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, whose leftist government has supported Morales' accusations of a coup against him by political rivals.
Morales’s attempt to seize a fourth term, in defiance of term limits and a 2016 referendum, sparked wide political unrest that ended up with street violence, looting, and clashes between his supporters and those opposing his ruling.
The United States praised Mexico’s decision to receive Morales, hoping that the latter’s departure would stabilise the situation in Bolivia.
Currently, Bolivian lawmakers are debating finding an interim president prior to a new election.