12:10 GMT +318 February 2019
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    Coca growers from the Yungas region who are fighting for control of the coca leaves market clash with riot police in La Paz, Bolivia

    WATCH Bolivian Coca Growers Violently Clash With Police

    © REUTERS / Manuel Claure
    Latin America
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    A violent fight broke out between Bolivian farmers growing coca plants and the country's authorities after the latter made a decision to replace the leadership of the growers' professional association ADEPCOCA.

    On Tuesday, Bolivian coca growers clashed with authorities after the country's government took over the headquarters of the farmers' governing board, ADEPCOCA. The siege of the APEPCOCA grounds, headed by female coca growers, began eight days ago.

    Last year, the country also witnessed violent protests in response to legislation cutting back legal areas of coca cultivation, a cash crop used to make recreational cocaine.

    Bolivia is one of the largest producers of coca plants in the world, alongside Colombia and Peru. In addition to the chemically-processed variant of coca, cocaine, the plant's leaves are used by Bolivians during indigenous ceremonies and rituals, as coca is reported to reduce fatigue.


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    cocaine, farmers, clashes, protests, Bolivia
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