Morales needed more than 50 percent of the vote to win, or 40 percent plus a 10-point lead to avoid a second round of voting in December [Aizar Raldes/AFP]

Bolivia‘s President Evo Morales declared victory on Thursday in elections whose disputed results have triggered riots, a general strike and opposition accusations that the leftist leader is trying to steal a fourth term in office.

Hours later, the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) on its website declared Morales the winner with 99.99 percent of the ballots counted from Sunday’s vote.

The electoral board’s final vote count gave Morales 47.07 percent of ballots compared with 36.51 percent for his challenger, Carlos Mesa, giving him the ten percentage point lead required to avoid a second round run-off.


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