Bolivia's Morales travels to Cuba for medical treatment

2 min

Buenos Aires (AFP)

Former Bolivia leader Evo Morales traveled to Cuba from Buenos Aires on Monday for medical treatment, Argentina's President Alberto Fernandez said.

"I believe he needs treatment and had to travel. He spoke to me a few days ago," Fernandez told Radio Continental on Monday.

Morales has been living in exile in Argentina after resigning as Bolivia's president in November and fleeing following three weeks of protests against his controversial re-election in a poll the Organization of American States said was rigged.

He first sought asylum in Mexico and then settled a month later in Argentina.

"As a refugee he isn't barred from going to Cuba. He has rights and can exercise them," said Fernandez.

Morales is standing as a Senate candidate in Bolivia's May 3 general election but faces arrest if he returns.

The interim government of President Jeanine Anez accuses him of sedition and terrorism over an audio recording in which he allegedly urges supporters to lay siege to major cities including La Paz.

Since resigning under pressure from the Bolivian military, Morales has spent his time among left-wing allies in Mexico, Cuba and Argentina.

He is barred from standing for president in May's election.

Bolivia's constitution limits a president to two consecutive terms but in October's poll, Morales was seeking a fourth successive mandate.

However, in the most recent opinion poll his Movement for Socialism party, whose candidate is former economy minister Luis Arce, led voter intentions with 26 percent compared to 17 percent for the nearest challenger.

From his exile in Argentina, Morales regularly rails against what he claims was a US-backed coup to remove him from office.