Video: Four arrested after deadly Bolivian university stampede

Hundreds of students had gathered in a sports arena for student council elections


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Published: Wed 11 May 2022, 8:55 AM

Four students have been arrested after a stampede at a Bolivian university left four of their peers dead and 85 injured, police said on Tuesday.

The suspects, all student leaders, were presented at a press conference by senior police officer Carlos Alberto Oblitas, who said one of them, a 25-year-old, was presumed to be the “intellectual and material author” of the crime.

Hundreds of students had gathered in an enclosed sports arena of the university for student council elections at the Tomas Frias university in the Potosi region of Bolivia’s southeast.

A heated debate ensued, and at least one student detonated a tear gas cannister, triggering the stampede, according to police.

Police said many of the wounded had suffered multiple injuries, including broken bones, and the fatalities were from asphyxiation.

Fights between students in Bolivia are not uncommon, and tear gas had been deployed in previous confrontations.


In March last year, 12 students died at a different university when a railing collapsed during another assembly confrontation.

Prosecutors have not yet specified what crime the suspects in this case will be charged with.

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