LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) - Bolivian President Evo Morales announced his resignation Sunday under mounting pressure from the military and the public after his re-election victory triggered weeks of fraud allegations and deadly protests.
The decision came after a day of fast-moving developments, including an offer from Morales to hold a new election. But the crisis deepened dramatically when the country’s military chief went on national television to call on him to step down.
“I am sending my resignation letter to the Legislative Assembly of Bolivia,” the 60-year-old socialist leader said in a statement.
Morales’ claim to have won a fourth term last month plunged the country into the biggest crisis of his nearly 14 years in power. The unrest left three people dead and over 100 injured in clashes between his supporters and opponents.
Earlier in the day Sunday, the Organization of American States said in a preliminary report that it had found a “heap of observed irregularities” in the Oct. 20 election and that a new vote should be held.
Morale agreed to that. But within hours, military chief Gen. Williams Kaliman made it clear that would not be sufficient.