06:59 GMT +310 December 2019
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    Bolivia's President Evo Morales arrives a press conference at the military airport in El Alto, Bolivia, Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019

    Bolivia’s Evo Morales Says Leaving for Mexico, But Will Return ‘With More Strength’

    © AP Photo / Juan Karita
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Bolivia’s former President Evo Morales has announced that he is leaving for Mexico, which has granted him political asylum, but will return soon.

    "Sisters and brothers, I leave for Mexico," Morales wrote on Twitter on Monday evening, at around 9:30 local time (01:30 GMT on Tuesday). He added that "it hurts to leave the country for political reasons, but … Soon I will return with more strength and energy."

    Later, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard confirmed that Evo Morales was on board the aircraft sent from Mexico, which had granted him political asylum.

    "Evo Morales is already on the Mexican Government plane sent to ensure his safe transfer to our country," Ebrard wrote on Twitter on Monday evening.

    ​While later in the day Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said that the plane of the Mexican Air Force with the resigned Bolivian President Evo Morales on board took off from Bolivia.

    Earlier on Monday, Peru’s foreign ministry said that the plane sent by the Mexican government to pick up Morales departed for Bolivia at 6:30 p. m. local time (23:30 GMT) and refueled in Peru.

    Morales stepped down on Sunday, amid massive demonstrations that were reinforced by the support of armed forces and the police, who were also calling for the resignation of the president, who won in the October presidential election that was nonetheless not recognized by the opposition.

    Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard announced on Monday that his country was granting political asylum to Morales.

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