US reissues travel advisory for Bolivia amid protests: 'Exercise increased caution'
The U.S. reissued a travel advisory for Bolivia Thursday amid recent protests.
The State Department reissued its Level 2 warning for the country, advising travelers to "Exercise Increased Caution" due to civil unrest.
Across the country, Bolivians participated in a "national assembly" led by the opposition Wednesday to discuss proposals, including whether or not to resume protests that began in December following the arrest of Santa Cruz Gov. Luis Fernando Camacho.
Protesters ended blockades earlier this month that had largely isolated the rich Santa Cruz region from the rest of Bolivia for more than 15 days, but leaders said the roadblocks could resume to press demands that the government free the region’s governor.
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Camacho, who is widely considered a leader of the opposition to Bolivia’s left-leaning national government, was detained late last year on "terrorism" charges related to previous demonstrations.
What did the State Department's Bolivia travel advisory say?
"Demonstrations, strikes, and roadblocks can occur at any time in Bolivia," The State Department said on its website. "Demonstrations can result in violence. Roadblocks and strikes may cut off traffic and restrict the flow of goods and services around the country.
The agency also both domestic and international flights may be delayed or canceled without warning.
Roadblocks went up in Santa Cruz, the eastern region that is Bolivia's economic engine and farming hub, shortly after Camacho was detained on Dec. 28.
He is held on charges stemming from protests that led to the 2019 resignation of then-President Evo Morales. Morales's party, which has since returned to power, accuses Camacho of orchestrating the protests and calls them a coup. The unrest resulted in 37 deaths.
What else did the State Department say?
The State Department warned travelers not to travel to the rural Chapare region and urged them to reconsider travel to the Yungas region because of crime, and said the U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to travelers in those areas.
The agency also reissued a travel advisory for Iran Thursday. The country has a Level 4 advisory, warning not to travel there "due to the risk of kidnapping and the arbitrary arrest and detention of U.S. citizens," according to its website.
The State Department advised exercising increased caution because of wrongful detentions.
Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: US reissues travel advisory for Bolivia amid 'civil unrest'