Bolivia’s Evo Morales lands in Argentina after being granted asylum

Photo: Reuters

The arrival of Morales comes two days after the inauguration in Argentina of President Alberto Fernandez.

Bolivian former president Evo Morales arrived on Thursday in Argentina, where he will be granted refugee status. “He’s just arrived. He has come to stay,” Argentina’s Foreign Minister Felipe Sola said.

Sola explained that Morales had requested refugee status and attributed his arrival to the fact that “he feels better here than in Mexico” where Bolivia’s first indigenous president initially sought shelter after fleeing his country on 11 November.

“A month ago [when] I arrived in Mexico, our sister country which saved my life, I was sad and devastated. Now that I’ve come to Argentina to continue struggling for the poorest… I feel strong and energized. Thanks to Mexico and Argentina for all your support and solidarity.”

Argentina’s President Alberto Fernandez said there had been a “coup” against Morales when he resigned. He offered in November to grant him asylum in Argentina after he began his term.

Morales resigned as president of Bolivia on Nov. 10 after the O.A.S. declared there were serious irregularities during the Oct. 20 election, prompting political allies to quit and the army to urge him to step down.

Morales will not stand as a candidate in fresh presidential elections, expected to take place early next year. But on Sunday his party, the Movement Towards Socialism (Mas), named him its campaign chief, suggesting he hopes to stay involved in Bolivian politics.

Sources: The Guardian, Reuters.

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