Bolivian police ask military to help maintain public order / News / News agency Inforos
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Bolivian police ask military to help maintain public order

Bolivian police ask military to help maintain public order

The police of Bolivia ask the country’s armed forces to intervene and help it maintain public order in the country, La Paz Police Department Commander Jose Antonio Barrenechea said.

"Commander-in-chief [Williams] Kaliman, I'm asking you to intervene, because reserves of the Bolivian police have already been exhausted," he said in an address from La Paz streets, aired by the Unitel TV station, TASS reports.

In his address, Barrenechea asked the military "to prevent deaths and bloodshed."

Armed Forces Commander Williams Kaliman responded by saying that the armed forces stand ready to help.

"The Armed Forces Command ordered the military to carry out joint operations with the police for the purpose of avoiding bloodshed," he told reporters at a news conference broadcast via Facebook.

Yuri Calderon, who earlier resigned from the post of the national police commander, said joint patrols "would begin today and will end when peace is restored in Bolivia." He added that "numerous police stations were looted and set on fire during the unrest."

The situation in the country remains tense despite Sunday’s resignation of president Evo Morales. Bolivian media report of clashes between opposition and the supporters of the resigned president.

The upper chamber of the Bolivian parliament will convene for an emergency session on Tuesday to consider possible solutions for the current political crisis, including who will head the country after the president’s resignation, said Bolivia’s Second Vice Speaker of the Senate Jeanine Anez.

Anez assured that lawmakers "are doing their best to stabilize the situation" and ensure soonest election of a new head of state.

"We summoned all senators for a session tomorrow," said Anez, who is currently the top official at the upper chamber of the parliament.

She also said that both chambers of the country's bicameral legislature would gather on Wednesday.

"We are convoking both sessions to determine the constitutional order of power transition," she said, adding that, in line with the constitution, she is supposed to get the vacant seat of the Senate’s speaker.

Earlier, former President of the Senate Adriana Salvatierra and her first deputy tendered their resignation.

On November 10, Bolivian President Evo Morales announced his resignation, branding the recent developments as a coup d’etat. He stepped down following the demands of the country’s armed forces, opposition and trade unions.

Bolivia's presidential election was held on October 20. The country's Supreme Electoral Court declared that incumbent President Evo Morales won the first round. His main rival, former President Carlos Mesa, said that he did not recognize Morales' victory. After the results of the election were announced, protests and strikes erupted across the South American country. Morales declared a state of emergency and accused the opposition of attempting to stage a coup.

The authorities of Cuba, Venezuela and Mexico as well as Argentina’s newly-elected President Alberto Fernandez have also slammed recent developments as a coup.

In line with the country’s constitution, if the president and the vice president resign, the head of the Senate should become an interim leader of the country. If he resigns, too, the post goes to the chairman of the Chamber of Deputies, the parliament’s lower house, but both Adriana Salvatierra and President of the Chamber of Deputies Victor Borda have already tendered their resignations.

Bolivian laws do not specify how power transition should be carried out in this case. However, Anez said she was ready to become acting president since she was supposed to head the parliament’s upper chamber after the resignation of Salvatierra and her first deputy.

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