Bolivia Approves New Constitution in Victory for Morales

Bolivia Approves New Constitution in Victory for Morales

LA PAZ, Bolivia -- Voters in Bolivia decisively approved a new constitution yesterday, handing a major victory to President Evo Morales and laying the foundations for the world's first modern indigenous state.

Supporters say the charter will empower Bolivia's long-excluded indigenous majority, which comprises roughly 60 percent of the population. Its text creates autonomous indigenous zones governed by traditional authorities and communal justice systems, which will elect representatives to Congress through customary procedures such as tribal councils.

"Finally we have a constitution that leaves racism and hatred aside, because indigenous people are included," said Adolfo Chavez, president of the Confederation of Indigenous Peoples of Bolivia.

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