Sunday, September 14, 2008

Bolivia's Crisis

Protests and demonstrations in Bolivia grew increasingly violent this week. Opponents of President Evo Morales in the resource-rich eastern provinces are pressing harder with autonomy demands after a recent recall referendum ratified both Morales and regional governors who oppose him. The latest protests have resulted in numerous casualties and significant property damage.

President Morales’ reaction has included lashing out against the United States, including Tuesday’s expulsion of the U.S. ambassador, who had met with one of the opposition governors several days earlier. Venezuela followed suit by expelling its U.S. ambassador, and the U.S. government responded by sending home both countries’ ambassadors to Washington.

The week ended with dramatically worsened relations between Bolivia and the United States and increasing speculation about the possibility – still remote – that Bolivia’s political violence could come to resemble civil war.

Links for More Information:

Analysis of the Protests

Information on Casualties and Damages

Regional Responses to the Protests:

The European Union’s Response:

The Bolivian Response:

The Venezuelan Response:

The United States’ Response:

Potential Resolution or Dialogues: