15 killed, 400 injured during pro-Morales demonstrations in Bolivia

Security forces clash with supporters of former President Evo Morales in Sacaba, Bolivia, Friday, Nov. 15, 2019. A least five people died and dozens were injured during the clashes. (AP Photo/Dico Solis)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 6:45 PM PT — Sunday, November 17, 2019

The death toll in Bolivia is rising as violent protests continue to rattle the country. According to local media, 15 people were killed in demonstrations Saturday and more than 400 were injured. Protesters are showing support for the country’s recently ousted President Evo Morales.

Security forces opened fire on those supporters, who were attempting to cross a military checkpoint on Friday. Police said the crowds carried weapons and Molotov cocktails, but were dispersed by riot police.

“They came to kill us — we had nothing but our little flags to defend ourselves,” said one protester. “Here are the dead, and there are more than 400 detainees — We don’t know if they are dead or alive, they’ve taken them as trash.”

A supporter of Bolivia’s former President Evo Morales yells at a police officer, telling him to respect the nation’s indigenous people in La Paz, Bolivia, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

Morales remains in Mexico, where he has been offered asylum.

Related: Bolivian President Evo Morales Steps Down

Meanwhile, the UN is warning violence from these ongoing protests could “spin out of control.” While covering the protests in Bolivia, Al Jazeera senior correspondent Teresa Bo was pepper sprayed by police. A video released this weekend has gone viral, showing Bo as she reported live from La Paz, Bolivia. Bo turned to identify herself to an officer who sprayed something in her face.

“I was just thrown tear gas by the police – on purpose,” stated Bo. “This is what’s happening in the middle of a plaza where people have been protesting peacefully.”

She continued to deliver her report on the situation despite the injury. Bo has released a statement via Twitter, thanking people for their support and expressing her hope that such practices will be denounced.

Supporters of former President Evo Morales clash with police in La Paz, Bolivia, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Juan Karita)

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