LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Anti-riot police and workers clashed in Bolivia’s capital during a protest against the government’s decision to close the country’s largest state-run textile company.
Officials said police fired tear gas at protesters and kept them from seizing a factory Wednesday. Several people were injured, including a protester who lost a hand when a stick of dynamite exploded as he tried to throw it.
More than 800 people were laid off when President Evo Morales closed the ENATEX national textile company Monday.
More than 5,000 workers joined in the protest led by the COB union, which has been a Morales ally.
The factory went into crisis after Bolivia lost its U.S. market when Morales expelled the American ambassador in 2008. Morales’ administration bought the factory in 2011 to save it from bankruptcy.