Bolivia’s interim leader says arrest warrant to be issued against Morales
FILE PHOTO: Former Bolivian President Evo Morales attends an interview with Reuters in Mexico City
SANANDITA, Bolivia (Reuters) – Bolivia will issue an arrest warrant in the coming days against former leftist President Evo Morales, accusing him of sedition, interim Bolivian President Jeanine Anez said on Saturday.
Morales is in Argentina, granted refugee status this week just days after the inauguration of new President Alberto Fernandez. Peronist Fernandez succeeded outgoing conservative Argentine leader Mauricio Macri, who lost his bid for re-election in October.
Morales had spent the previous month in Mexico in the wake of a highly-contested October election in Bolivia. He had proclaimed victory after his government was accused of manipulating the vote results. Morales, who had been in power nearly 14 years, left Bolivia as the controversy grew.
“He can return whenever he wants. He left because he wanted to,” Anez told reporters. “The arrest warrant will be issued in the next few days, because we have already brought the charges.”
Morales had obtained his fourth consecutive term in the October vote, according to the official count, which was criticized for irregularities by the Organization of American States. Morales resigned under pressure from the armed forces in what he has called a coup d’etat.
(Reporting by Bolivia newsroom, writing by Maximilian Heath and Hugh Bronstein)