Bolivia: 2 people killed in clashes in election dispute

Bolivia: 2 people killed in clashes in election dispute
A woman holds the Spanish message: "Neither Mesa nor Evo in October" to protest the reelection of President Evo Morales, and also protest rival candidate, former President Carlos Mesa, in La Paz, Bolivia, Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019. Bolivia’s government said Wednesday the Organization of American States is sending a 30-person team to launch a “binding” audit of a presidential election that the opposition says was manipulated to ensure the re-election of Morales. (AP Photo/Juan Karita)

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivian authorities say at least two people have been killed in clashes between supporters and opponents of President Evo Morales over the disputed presidential election.

Health officials in Santa Cruz province say the people were fatally shot at around midnight Wednesday in the town of Montero. Santa Cruz is an opposition stronghold.

The government of Morales is blaming the opposition led by Carlos Mesa for the deaths.

Backers of Mesa say results from the Oct. 20 vote were rigged to give Morales enough of a majority to avoid a runoff. Morales denies irregularities.

The Organization of American States sent a team to Bolivia to begin an election audit Thursday. Mesa rejects the audit, saying it is a deal between the OAS and Morales that excludes the opposition.