Latin American nations bolster Bolivia's Morales amid opposition violence

Countries and regional groups in Latin America Thursday expressed support to Bolivian President Evo Morales amid violent actions to tumble his government.

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva reaffirmed in a phone conversation with Morales his support to the Bolivian government against rightist groups.

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro also called his Bolivian counterpart David Choquehuanca and extended the support of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to the Bolivian government.

Bolivia and President Morales have Venezuela's support "in good and bad moments," said Maduro.

Meanwhile, Chavez said on Thursday he is ready to intervene in case that Morales were overthrown.

In a TV and radio address, Chavez said that his government would back the use of force in case of a military coup to overthrow or kill Morales.

"If any of our governments is overthrown, we will give green light to military operations of any type to get the power back to the people," Chavez said.

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega also expressed his support for necessary measures to stop protests by the opposition to demand autonomy.

Ortega said what is happening in Bolivia is tragic, adding that "We are with Evo (Morales), we support him and we express our sympathy."

The Paraguayan government Thursday expressed concerns for the armed clashes between the pro- and anti-government forces in Bolivia.

Paraguayan President Fernando Lugo said in a statement he is "deeply concerned" with the violence in many parts of Bolivia that has shaken Bolivia for three days.

"Paraguay reaffirms its full support to the Bolivian democracy and government chosen by the people, led by President Morales. We look forward to a conciliatory and pacific solution for the well beings of our neighbor and sister nation (Bolivia)," said the statement.

Andean Community of Nations (CAN) Secretary-General Ecuadorian Freddy Ehlers Thursday called on the authorities and political forces in Bolivia to resolve differences in accordance with law.

"CAN makes a call to all regional and national authorities and to all political forces in Bolivia to contain their actions with a full respect to the country's constitutional and legal norms," said a CAN statement.

Bolivian rightist opposition seeking to tumble Morales attacked the security forces and occupied governmental offices in many regions in the past few days.

At least one person was killed and another three could have died in violent clashes throughout the country, Bolivia's Vice Interior Minister Ruber Gamarra told a press conference Thursday.

According to local media, on-going violence has killed at least four and injured 30.

[Source: China View, Xinhua, Mexico City, 11Sep08]

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