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Bolivian Presidential Candidate Refuses to Accept Legitimacy of Election Audit by OAS

© REUTERS / UESLEI MARCELINOBolivian presidential candidate Carlos Mesa gestures during a protest in La Paz, Bolivia, October 22, 2019
Bolivian presidential candidate Carlos Mesa gestures during a protest in La Paz, Bolivia, October 22, 2019 - Sputnik International
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LA PAZ (Sputnik) - Carlos Mesa, the opposition candidate in the recent Bolivian presidential election, announced on Wednesday that he would not recognize the legitimacy of the upcoming audit of the election results by the Organization of American States.

According to the data from the Supreme Electoral Tribunal, the current President Evo Morales won in the first round with a decisive lead. Mesa, who was Morales' main rival, refused to acknowledge the result. Earlier in the day, Foreign Minister Diego Pary said that the OAS would begin reviewing the results on Thursday.

"We reject this audit in its current terms, agreed upon in a unilateral manner," Mesa said in a statement, circulated via local media.

During the counting of votes protest rallies sprung up across Bolivia and later morphed into civil unrest with protesters setting regional branches of the Electoral Tribunal on fire.

Morales described the demonstrations as an attempted coup d’etat staged by the right-wing opposition.

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